A Sydney gastronomic institution has been saved, with parts of the rescue plan including the sale of $ 1.15 million worth of wine from its vault.
An iconic Sydney dining destination and late-night hangout will relaunch after it was rescued from the brink of collapse.
The Golden Century seafood restaurant on Sussex Street in the Chinatown district came into operation in August after serving Sydney residents for 31 years.
The restaurant, which was famous for its wall-to-wall crab and lobster tanks, entered voluntary management after failing to negotiate a new lease.
The $ 4.5 million rescue plan, which was proposed by the family behind the restaurant, received overwhelming support from creditors.
It will be funded in part by the bulk sale of $ 1.15 million worth of wines from the Golden Century vault to a buyer.
That’s slightly below the original $ 1.2 million proposed due to identified damaged or unsuitable bottles.
The plan will also allow the Wong family to pay off their debts and pay most of the employee’s fees, including the outstanding wages of 65 employees.
But employees will only get 47.4 cents for termination rights.
Chifley Advisory’s liquidator Desmond Teng said it would be up to the owners whether they returned this year or next, taking into account the impact of the closures and the pandemic.
“There are a lot of pieces of the puzzle that you have to put together and there is a lot to commit to right now,” he told news.com.au.
“The rent is not cheap, the employees are expensive and there is not much income right now, and with the closure the city is dead.”
But he said the rescue plan was a good result, supported by employees who hope to return when the restaurant is up and running again.
“Allow a reboot and now owners can have a little more room to rethink and rethink strategies when they would like to trade again, subject to the Covid-19 issue and subject to signing a lease on good business terms, either in the same place or in a different place, they have time to think about that now, ”he said.
The kitchen and restaurant equipment will be handed over to the ANZ bank.
Visited by celebrities like Lady Gaga and Rihanna and frequented by politicians, the restaurant had made a profit of nearly $ 825,000 by the end of the 2020/21 fiscal year, but suffered significant losses of $ 450,000 between July 1 and August 30, this year.
Despite its popularity, the accounts revealed that the restaurant had been struggling with losses since 2018, suffering a $ 1.1 million drop in financial year 2018 and another hit of $ 590,000 in financial year 2019.
The restaurant was founded by Eric and Linda Wong, who moved to Australia from Hong Kong.