Popular restaurant chains surviving coronavirus with 'common sense'

Benningan’s and Steak and Ale was prepared to take on coronavirus

On what was expected to be a very busy St. Patrick’s Day for two popular chain restaurants, is now a game of survival.

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Paul Mangiamele, who is the CEO of Benningan’s and Steak and Ale, told FOX Business that he prepared his restaurants to take on the coronavirus by using "common sense" and emplacing safety measures early on.

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"We had already been doing some of the things that are from a delivery standpoint or ... pick-up only," he told Neil Cavuto.

And despite optimism over some third-party delivery providers rolling back commissions and offering free delivery, making ends meet is still a priority.

“We are still trying to survive,” he said.

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Even so, Mangiamele is concerned that other restaurant brands aren’t as well-equipped to handle the virus and he is. Even before the pandemic, he said, the table was already set for overleveraged brands or those weren’t smart about signing leases. He believes they will eventually be “shaken out.”

“It will absolutely be brutal for some of the restaurant companies that weren’t prepared,” he said.

However, Mangiemele said this bodes well for the chains that have the cash to take advantage of second-generation space.

“Franchising has never been better,” he said adding that after the virus passes it’s going to be a “very robust time” because the fundamentals are still very strong.

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