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Red Lobster closes multiple restaurants, lists them for auction

Red Lobster closing dozens of restaurants, including NY and NJ locations. Facing financial struggles, auctioning off inventory. Largest seafood chain in U.S.

Red Lobster, a beloved seafood chain known for its affordable options, is facing a challenging time as it grapples with financial difficulties. The company, which has been a staple in the casual dining industry for over 50 years, is now forced to close dozens of its locations across the country, including in New York and New Jersey.

The struggles of Red Lobster have been attributed to a combination of factors, including a heavy debt load, executive turnover, and financial losses. This has led to considerations of a potential Chapter 11 Bankruptcy filing, marking a significant turning point for the once-thriving restaurant chain.

In response to the closures, TAGeX Brands, a leading auction company specializing in restaurant and food auctions, has announced an online sale of Red Lobster restaurant inventory. This sale, described as the "largest restaurant equipment auction ever" by TAGeX, includes kitchen equipment, furniture, tables, and chairs from over 50 locations nationwide.

While the initial announcement mentioned the closure of dozens of stores, recent reports suggest that the actual number may be closer to 99 locations, representing about 15% of Red Lobster's total footprint. Despite these closures, Red Lobster remains the largest seafood restaurant chain in the U.S., a testament to its enduring popularity among diners.

The decision to close these stores comes after Thai Union, one of Red Lobster's major investors, announced its intention to end its partnership earlier this year. Citing challenges such as the COVID-19 pandemic, industry headwinds, and rising costs, Thai Union sought to distance itself from the struggling chain.

In an effort to avoid bankruptcy, Red Lobster has been actively seeking a buyer, but as of now, no offers have been made. The future of the iconic seafood chain remains uncertain as it navigates these challenging times and works to find a path forward in the ever-changing restaurant industry.

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