Chef Dylan McGrath fights to keep businesses afloat

Celebrity chef Dylan McGrath, who weathered Dublin’s economic crash, ill health and shaky restaurant scene, is now battling to keep two of his businesses afloat.

he was Chef The presenter is seeking a bailout for the companies behind two of his best-known restaurants – Rustic Stone and BrasserieSixty6.

The Belfast-born chef, whose celebrity clients have included Beyonce and Jay Z, is no stranger to the vagaries of Ireland’s economy with his Michelin-starred restaurant Mint in Ranelagh, a much-publicized victim of the economic crash.

He also battled chronic back pain that led him to undergo surgery, months of recovery and having to learn to walk again.

Now, official Corporations Office documents for two companies of which Mr McGrath is a director, Prime Steak and Home RBVR, confirm that Neil Hughes of the Baker Tilly accounting group has been appointed as a so-called process adviser for the companies.

Prime Steak operates the Rustic Stone restaurant while Home RBVR is behind McGrath’s BrasserieSixty6.

Process adviser appointments fall under new legislation that provides a rescue process for small businesses. The so-called Small Business Administrative Rescue Process (Scarp) provides a simplified restructuring mechanism for viable small businesses facing financial difficulties.

It is initiated by the companies themselves and can begin without any judicial authorization being required.

Once appointed, the advisor must develop a rescue plan acceptable to the various parties involved.

In a statement released yesterday, Mr McGrath said: ‘We would like to thank all of our staff, loyal customers and suppliers for their support over the past two years as we dealt with the effects of the pandemic. We are convinced that the restaurants have excellent prospects for the future, once we have reorganized the businesses through this process.

A spokesperson for the chef said business was business as usual at his two downtown restaurants, BrasserieSixty6 and Rustic Stone, as they began a process of restructuring.

Mr Hughes declined to comment on specifics of the pending cases but said the Scarp process had only been used half a dozen times but, at seven weeks, it was faster than the review and less expensive as it was being done out of court unless one of the parties involved objects.

The latest set of publicly available accounts for Prime Steak show it had racked up losses of €2.2m at the end of June 2021, after posting a loss of €1.1m in the previous 12 months . Its net liabilities, including bank loans, amounted to more than 1.8 million euros at the end of June last year.

Prime Steak also owns stock in a company called Prime Steak 2012, which does business as Fade Street Social.

Home RBVR’s accounts show it had an unallocated loss of €608,000 at the end of June last year and net liabilities of €600,000. It posted a loss of €528,000 in the 12 months to the end of June 2021.

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