- The Casual Dining Group also owns Latin American chain Las Iguanas
- It saw losses widen 20% in the 12 months to May 28 from £48.4m a year earlier
- Food chains are battling a rising minimum wage and soaring business rates
The owner of Bella Italia and La Tasca became the latest High Street eateries to rack up huge losses as it plunged £60.5million in to the red.
The Casual Dining Group, which also owns Latin American chain Las Iguanas, saw losses widen 20 per cent in the 12 months to May 28 from £48.4million a year earlier.
Its bottom line was hit by exceptional costs of £24.4million which included £2.5million to cover redundancies and administrative costs.
The owner of Bella Italia and La Tasca became the latest High Street eateries to rack up huge losses as it plunged £60.5million in to the red
Stripping out the cost of tax and one-off expenses, the company’s losses shrunk from £8.1million to £5million.
It is a difficult time for the restaurant sector as food chains battle with a rising minimum wage, soaring business rates and tighter consumer spending.
Jamie’s Italian, Prezzo and Strada have all been forced to close outlets, with Byron and Carluccio’s facing a similar fate.
Sales at the Casual Dining Group edged up 2.2 per cent to £329million.
Steve Richards, chief executive of Casual Dining Group, said: ‘Against a challenging backdrop, we have maintained progression while further reducing discounting.
‘At the same time, we have been very conservative with our retail price increases as we continue to offer best value to our customers,’ he added.
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