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Lotte seeks to unload TGI Friday’s as part of restructuring

The interior of a TGI Friday’s restaurant.

Lotte is moving to divest its TGI Friday’s restaurant chain rights in South Korea as it restructures its business portfolio.

Korea Times report indicated Lotte will split the business and sell off shares to new investors, having already spun off the chain’s assets and debts. The group has been badly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, with a sales drop equivalent to US$140.4 million during this year’s second financial quarter, 18.2 per cent down from last year’s results. Of all Lotte GRS chains, only Lotteria seems to be making profits, according to observers in the industry.

The groups’ flagship Lotte Shopping will close up to 120 physical outlets under various brands this year during its retail business restructure, while its online business continues to expand.

“It is time for a self-scrutiny on our business practices so far, and CEOs must aware that the priority is streamlining their current business processes,” said Lotte Chairman Shin Dong-bin. “While doing so, companies should make greater efforts to make innovations in a long-term perspective.”

Lotte has operated TGI Friday’s within the territory since 2002, opening venues within the group’s shopping malls. There are currently 21 outlets in operation, less than half that were running at the peak of its popularity back in 2013.

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