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Thousands of Your Favorite Fast Food Locations Could Close

Two super popular fast-food chains are at risk of closing some restaurants.

The effects of the coronavirus pandemic and restaurant closings on food businesses will be felt for a while. Some have been forced to limit their menu. Others have shut down a number of locations. A couple of them have shut down for good altogether.

All that, plus, a company that operates two popular fast-food restaurants may be filing for bankruptcy soon, meaning some Pizza Hut and Wendy's locations could be in trouble.

NPC International Inc, which owns 1,229 franchised Pizza Hut locations and 393 franchised Wendy's locations is preparing to file for chapter 11 bankruptcy because it is $800 million in debt, according to the Wall Street Journal. The company has been in talks to file since the beginning of the year when it missed interest payments on its debt. The first Pizza Hut under the NPC company opened in 1962.

Related: These Restaurant Chains are Disappearing After Closing Almost 700 Locations

All of this comes after Pizza Hut's parent company, Yum! Brands announced that customers turned to the pizza giant during stay-at-home orders. In May they hit an eight-year high in sales of delivery and carryout orders. Sales compared to this time last year are up over 10%.

Unlike other bankruptcy types, chapter 11 means a company will look at its debt and make changes to reduce it. The company that owns and operates Chuck E. Cheese, called CEC Entertainment, also filed for this type recently, after laying off workers and selling their pizza under a different name during the pandemic. Only 266 locations of the place "where a kid could be a kid" and the company's other brand, Piper Pizza, have reopened, it's hard to say when more will join them.

The parent company of fast-casual cafe Le Pain Quotidien filed for chapter 11 in May. Brio Italian Mediterranean and Bravo Fresh Italian owner FoodFirst Global Restaurants did so as well. Some states are closing restaurants again, but here are 6 Other Beloved Restaurants That Have Filed for Bankruptcy because of COVID-19.

Eat This, Not That! is constantly monitoring the latest food news as it relates to COVID-19 in order to keep you healthy, safe, and informed (and answer your most urgent questions). Here are the precautions you should be taking at the grocery store, the foods you should have on hand, the meal delivery services and restaurant chains offering takeout you need to know about, and ways you can help support those in need. We will continue to update these as new information develops. Click here for all of our COVID-19 coverage, and sign up for our newsletter to stay up-to-date.
Amanda McDonald
Amanda has a master's degree in journalism from Northwestern University and a bachelor's degree in digital journalism from Loyola University Chicago. Read more about Amanda