Fiesta Restaurant Group, Inc., parent company of the Pollo Tropical brand, today provided an update on its restaurants impacted by Hurricane Ian in Florida. The Company owns, operates and franchises 137 Pollo Tropical restaurants across the state.
In an effort to ensure the safety of its team members, select Pollo Tropical restaurants in the storm’s path were closed early on September 27 and all Pollo Tropical restaurants were closed on September 28. From September 29 through October 3, a total of 38 restaurants in the hardest hit markets of Ft. Myers, Naples, Orlando and Tampa were closed for all or a portion of that time period due to storm conditions and utility outages. Only four restaurants remain closed and all other restaurants are open for business.
Thankfully, no serious injuries to Pollo Tropical team members have been reported. In addition, no significant facilities damage occurred to Company-owned restaurants as a result of the storm. There was inventory loss at a number of locations due to power outages, the exact extent of which is still being quantified. The Company is assisting many of its team members and their families who have personally suffered losses as a result of these storms, through its non-profit Fiesta Family Foundation.
Notably, Pollo Tropical restaurants in the south Florida markets were generally unaffected by Hurricane Ian and have been operating under normal conditions since September 30.
The Company maintains comprehensive insurance coverage on all of its restaurants including property, flood and business interruption and is working with its insurance providers to assess the overall impact from Hurricane Ian. The Company is in the process of assessing damages and losses and expects to file insurance claims upon completion of the assessment.
Fiesta President and Chief Executive Officer Rich Stockinger says, “Our team members and supplier partners have demonstrated incredible tenacity in helping us resume operations at most of our restaurants; and we greatly appreciate their efforts as we support and feed the communities that have been impacted by Ian. While the hurricane may have affected our business in the short-run and caused some minor property damage at a few locations, we are carrying on with the execution of our key growth initiatives which we believe should contribute meaningfully to our sales momentum.”