Just 5 years after making a significant investment in launching their first restaurant on the Isle of Wight, Prezzo has announced that it will be closing its ‘non-viable’ Newport eatery for good.
The Italian restaurant chain opened in Newport High Street back in April 2016, creating 18 jobs. The doors were opened after the former Post Office site was spectacularly transformed to create upmarket dining for 178 guests.
However, the coronavirus pandemic has taken its toll on the chain and now 22 restaurants are to permanently close across the UK in a bid to save the struggling company. Prezzo was taken over by Cain International in December which it is hoped will save the vast majority of Prezzo’s 2,900-strong workforce. Sadly, 216 jobs are set to be lost following today’s closure announcement.
Prezzo Isle of Wight temporarily shut its doors when the first national lockdown hit and didn’t re-open until October, but was once again forced to close as a result of the second and third lockdowns. Now it looks like the doors will never re-open.
Jonathan Goldstein, chief executive of Cain International, has said:
“We firmly believe that strong hospitality businesses, such as Prezzo, have a bright future and will play an essential role in reviving the UK economy.
“However, to do so, we must get through this current crisis of mounting liabilities and no revenues.
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“The lack of visibility on when and how the sector will reopen has heightened economic uncertainty to the point where decisive action had to be taken to secure the future of the business and the majority of jobs for Prezzo’s people.
“We are deeply sorry for all those affected by the permanent closure of the 22 non-viable restaurants.
“It was a difficult, but essential, decision to take but doing so will allow us to save thousands of jobs and create more in the future.”
It is unclear at this early stage what the future holds for the High Street premises, which is the latest location to be added to Newport’s growing list of empty properties. Prezzo’s competitor, Pizza Express, has already closed in the town.