• Boston Pizza International (TSX:BPF.UN) will temporarily lay off half of its 192 corporate office staff, citing a significant decline in business
  • On March 18 this year, the company announced the closure off all its restaurants and sports bars due to COVID-19
  • Kitchens at these outlets continue to operate to facilitate home delivery and take-out
  • The company said that the reduction in operations has made it impossible to maintain its current staff level
  • Boston Pizza International (BPF.UN) is currently down 7.15 per cent to C$6.49, with a market cap of $142.27 million

Boston Pizza International (TSX:BPF.UN) will temporarily lay off half of its 192 corporate office staff, citing a significant decline in business.

On March 18 this year, the company announced that it would close all of its 390 restaurant and sports bar locations. This includes municipalities and regions where government-mandated closures are not yet in effect.

Despite the continued operation of the company’s kitchens to facilitate home delivery and take-out, Boston Pizza has reported a dramatic decline in sales.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the company serviced more than 50 million guests each year, generating more than C$1.1 billion in sales.

Jordan Holm, President of Boston Pizza International, said that today is a challenging day for the company and its team.

“The reduction in operations across our restaurant network has resulted in a dramatic decline in sales making it impossible to sustain our current level of staffing during this period.

“Just as our independently and locally owned restaurants have been forced to make difficult decisions and significant changes to adjust to this period of depressed sales, so must we,” he added.

On March 23, Boston Pizza also announced the suspension of its dividend distribution.

The company said that its scheduled March dividends of 10.2 cents per unit would be paid at the end of the month, but all other distributions thereafter would be scrapped.

“I am hopeful, as I’m sure all our franchisees are, that sooner rather than later we’ll be recalling employeesto our offices and staff to restaurants as business and society returns to normal,” Holm concluded.

Boston Pizza International (BPF.UN) is currently down 7.15 per cent to $6.49 at 10:09am EST.

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