Jamie Oliver forced to shut 25 eateries abroad; what about the Joburg one?

22 May 2019 - 14:56
By Zola Zingithwa
Celebrity chef and restaurateur, Jamie Oliver.
Image: Getty Images Celebrity chef and restaurateur, Jamie Oliver.

Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver will be closing down 25 restaurants due to financial woes.

The Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group announced Tuesday that it had gone into administration. "Most of its locations are closing immediately, taking more than 1,000 jobs with them," reports Fortune, adding that accounting firm KPMG's insolvency team will handle the process.

Those shutting down include 23 Jamie's Italian eateries across the UK, as well as Barbecoa steakhouse and Fifteen restaurant in London.

The three Jamie Oliver restaurants at England's Gatwick Airport, as well as international franchises such as Jamie's Italian in Melrose Arch, Joburg, will remain open.

Katie Moloi, the marketing co-ordinator for Jamie's Italian SA, confirmed that the local business will not be affected. In fact, the restaurant took to their Facebook page to clarify that it's still very much "open for business and going strong".

Jamie’s Italian SA is still open for business and going strong! We hope to see you for a delicious meal soon!

Posted by Jamie's Italian South Africa on Wednesday, May 22, 2019

The so-called Brexit effect is being touted as one of the factors behind the restaurant group's financial struggles; the depreciating pound made the cost of importing ingredients more expensive. 

The celebrity chef tried to save the business by injecting millions from his personal savings into the restaurant group in 2018, reports The Telegraph.

Oliver took to social media to announce his "devastation" over the news, as well as to thank those who had supported his restaurant ventures.