BOSTON (WBZ-AM) — The parent company of Papa Gino's and D'Angelo Grilled Sandwiches, PGHC, has filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy.
In an agreement, PGHC Holdings, inc will sell the company to Wynnchurch Capital, a private equity firm.
The terms of the deal are still unclear and were not publically disclosed — the sale will still need to be approved in Bankruptcy court.
On Sunday workers at 95 restaurants across the region are were caught off guard Sunday as stores across the region have abruptly closed.
In a statement, the company said it "regrets having to close these restaurants but believes focusing resources on a core of best-performing restaurants is the responsible approach."
There are now 97 Papa Gino's locations in New England listed on the company's website, when there had previously been 150 stores listed. More than 40 stores have been closed, many without notice. A sign posted on some stores simply reads, “This location is now closed. Thank you.”
According to the company statement, 100 Papa Gino's restaurants and 78 D'Angelo Grilled Sandwiches restaurants, including franchise locations, continue to operate and remain open for business. It is unclear how many employees are affected by the sudden closings The Company did state that they "hope(s) to move certain team members from closed restaurants to restaurants that continue to operate."
One worker said he got a call from his boss Sunday morning telling him not to come in--and a little more information about what's been going on.
"She told me that a new company bought the franchise, and they've been kind of like, going around the stores with people high up in corporate," he said. "We thought they were just trying to help each other out, but obviously, they were assessing which stores we should shut down and which stores we should keep open."
Another worker received a voicemail from a manager as he was getting ready to go to work.
“So I call back. She says, ‘Are you sitting down?’ ‘No, but I feel like I should be standing … but I’ll sit down,” he said.
That worker told WBZ NewsRadio1030 that most people out of work will likely be retained, but they will have to reapply for their job.
The company also owns D'Angelo's sandwich shops, and a number of those have also reportedly been closed. Papa Gino's, founded in 1961 as Piece O'Pizza, is headquartered in Dedham.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Ben Parker (@radiobenparker) reports