An Applebee's franchisee is buying Corner Bakery for $15M

SSCP Management, owner of Roy’s and a co-owner of Cici’s, won a bankruptcy auction for the fast-casual bakery/café chain.
Corner Bakery sale
Corner Bakery is being sold out of bankruptcy court for $15 million. / Photo: Shutterstock.

SSCP Management is apparently getting a taste for operating restaurant brands.

The Texas-based company, a large franchisee of Applebee’s and Sonic that owns the Roy’s brand and is a co-owner of Cici’s, won a bankruptcy court auction for Corner Bakery Café, according to court documents. SSCP agreed to pay $15 million for the 138-unit chain and take on some liabilities.

Corner Bakery declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in February, less than three years after Roark Capital sold it to the Rohan Group of Companies. The bakery/café chain has struggled for years while the pandemic made things worse, draining its urban markets of the office workers on which it depended for much of its business.

System sales at Corner Bakery declined 6.5% last year to $212.3 million, according to data from Restaurant Business sister company Technomic.

Unit volumes have been a big problem for the chain. A typical location generates $1.4 million in revenue every year, down 27% over the past five years. The brand has closed more than a quarter of its restaurants in the past five years.

SSCP had acquired the company’s debt on the secondary market and moved to take it over, which prompted Corner Bakery to declare bankruptcy earlier this year.  

Corner Bakery reached a “stalking horse” agreement last month with a company controlled by Wexford Capital, a hedge fund that once was a major investor in Famous Dave’s. Jeff Crivello, the barbecue chain’s former CEO, was part of that group. But SSCP was able to outbid that company in the auction.

This is not the first time SSCP has taken this route. It worked with Gala Corp. to acquire Cici’s out of bankruptcy in 2021, for instance.

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