Begbies Traynor has overseen the pre-package sale of City District Limited to Southern Wind Group Limited, who has acquired a “substantial” part of the business and assets in a move that has saved 243 jobs.
City District Limited, which trades as the Fazenda Rodizio Bar & Grill alongside sister brand Picanha by Fazenda, first went into administration on 1 March 2021, with Begbies Traynor appointed as administrators.
Founded in 2010, the Huddersfield-based company operated six South American gaucho-style grilling and Rodizio dining restaurants under the Fazenda and Picanha brands.
The business suffered from the impact of prolonged lockdowns and restrictions caused by Covid-19, however, which resulted in a “significant build-up” of landlord and HMRC arrears which could no longer be serviced without additional funding.
After a period of marketing undertaken by Begbies Traynor Group, a pre-packaged sale was successfully agreed to Southern Wind Group Limited.
The new company, headed up by City District Limited’s former chief executive Terence Langley and managing director Tomás Maunier, will continue to trade as ‘Fazenda’ and will retain the Leeds, Manchester, Edinburgh and Liverpool Fazenda sites.
The acquisition also includes the recently launched e-commerce arm of the business, ‘Fazenda at Home’, where customers can continue to purchase meats and buy ‘prepare-at-home’ meal kits.
While 243 jobs have been rescued, Fazenda Birmingham and Picanha Chester are not included in the deal, which will leave 69 staff members redundant.
Julian Pitts, joint administrator, Begbies Traynor, said: “After more than 10 years of healthy trading, the Fazenda restaurant chain became yet another casualty of the impact of the pandemic on the hospitality sector.
“With the UK undergoing multiple lockdowns, together with social distancing measures and increased working from home, the restaurant trade has faced one of its toughest periods ever.”
Chief executive of Southern Wind Group Limited, Terence Langley, said: “We have high hopes that Fazenda will find the right place in Birmingham to operate in the near future, and we can continue on the growth path planned pre-Covid.”
Addleshaw Goddard’s restructuring team in Leeds and Edinburgh advised the joint administrators throughout the sale process. Walker Morris in Leeds acted as advisers to Southern Wind Group.