Metro-East News

Joe’s Crab Shack owner files for bankruptcy protection

Customers enter the Joe’s Crab Shack location in Fairview Heights in this file photo.
Customers enter the Joe’s Crab Shack location in Fairview Heights in this file photo. dholtmann@bnd.com

The owner of Joe’s Crab Shack is preparing to file for bankruptcy and has entered into an agreement to sell the company, according to a press release the company published Tuesday.

Ignite Restaurant Group Inc., which also owns Brick House Tavern and Tap, said the sale should be made within 60 to 90 days, and all locations will remain open.

According to the release, Ignite is working to sell both of its brands to an affiliate of Kelly Companies, an equity firm based in San Diego, through a cash-bid offer. Other companies will also be able to bid on the company’s assets in a court-supervised process conducted by Piper Jeffray & Co, an asset management firm.

The company stated that it expects its restaurants “will remain open and operating as usual,” and that customers “can expect to continue to enjoy the same great food and service that they have come to expect from our brands.”

A spokesman at Joe’s Crab Shack in Fairview Heights, located at 51 Ludwig Drive, was unable to comment.

“Today’s sale agreement represents the culmination of a long and thorough process, and is an important step in positioning Joe’s and Brick House for future growth and success,” CEO Jonathan Tibus said, according to the release.

Ignite Restaurant Group has reported declining sales in the past quarter, and its shares have dropped more than 95 percent this year.

Kaley Johnson: 618-239-2526, @KaleyJohnson6

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