Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s restaurant chain in Britain has filed for bankruptcy protection. This puts around 1300 jobs at risk and causes a stir amongst local retail and food outlets. Despite Oliver’s international recognition, the company has not been in good shape over the previous two years. Last year saw the sale of five branches of Oliver’s Italian restaurants, Jamie’s Italian, in Australia sold off as well as another being put into administration. Additionally, numerous locations were closed in Britain, as well.
Despite Oliver pumping around NZ$25 million into his Italian chains, Oliver’s restaurants are still struggling. On Twitter, Oliver said, “I’m devastated that our much-loved UK restaurants have gone into administration. I am deeply saddened by this outcome and would like to thank all of the people who have put their hearts and souls into this business over the years.” Speculation is that the failing restaurant chain is due to the amount of competition that continues to grow as well as the escalating rents in local commercial districts.