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Financing

How Punch Bowl Social is surviving the pandemic, without Cracker Barrel

Founder Robert Thompson joins this week’s edition of the RB podcast A Deeper Dive, and insists consumers will come back to his restaurants.

Three months ago, Punch Bowl Social was seemingly left for dead when its sponsor, Cracker Barrel, opted to pull its support less than one year after investing in the chain.

This week’s episode of the Restaurant Business podcast A Deeper Dive features Robert Thompson, Punch Bowl’s CEO and founder, who discusses that event, and what the company has done in the succeeding weeks to survive.

Cracker Barrel made a surprise investment in the chain last year and then almost as surprisingly opted to pull its support after states started closing off dining rooms due to the pandemic in March.

Thompson discusses the chain’s search for funding, its relationship with landlords and the decision to permanently close two of its locations. He also discusses how the company plans to adapt to a new environment.

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