Herbert Smith Freehills, Pinsent Masons and Jones Day serve up Byron burger chain restructuring

Herbert Smith Freehills, Jones Day and Pinsent Masons have taken the lead roles on the restructuring of British burger chain Byron.

Yesterday, the restaurant group was given a new lease of life after its creditors voted to back a company voluntary agreement (CVA) that will see rent reduced at 20 of its sites for six months, with potential closures further down the line.

Jones Day is acting on the restructuring alongside accountancy firm KPMG, with City restructuring partner Ben Larkin playing the lead role.

Larkin described the CVA as a “good result” and said that Byron is a “well-known brand that will hopefully go on to do great things”.

Herbert Smith Freehills is understood to be acting for Byron’s new private equity owner Three Hills Capital, with restructuring senior associate John Chetwood in the lead.

The banks, led by Santander and the Royal Bank of Scotland, are being advised by Pinsent Masons.

City restructuring partner Steve Cottee is leading the firm’s team alongside senior associate Serena McAllister.

Byron’s chief executive Simon Cope said in a statement yesterday (31 January): “Our landlords have been both understanding and positive throughout this process and we look forward to working proactively with them in the coming months. As a result of this restructuring process, a number of our restaurants will close and we will do everything possible to redeploy staff to other sites and initiatives.”

Byron is the latest name on the high street to run into trouble in recent months. Just before Christmas, Kirkland & Ellis advised as Toys R Us agreed a CVA with the Pension Protection Fund, saving it from bankruptcy.

Kirkland is also currently advising the bondholders on the debt restructuring of scandal-hit South African retail conglomerate Steinhoff, with Linklaters acting for the company.