EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP — The Carrabba’s Italian Grill location in Harbor Square, the former Shore Mall, has closed as part of a sudden shutdown of 43 restaurants by the company’s owner.
Bloomin’ Brands, which also owns Bonefish Grill and Outback Steakhouse, said in a statement it decided to close the underperforming locations Wednesday.
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By Friday morning, the Egg Harbor Township Carrabba’s, which opened in 2006, had a sign on the door saying it was closed. That branch also no longer shows up in searches on the company’s website, bloominbrands.com.
The company has Outback and Bonefish restaurants in the township, and both still show up on the locators for those chains.
Bloomin’ Brands, based in Tampa, Florida, says it operates about 1,500 restaurants in 48 states and several U.S. territories. Some of those locations are franchised, the company says.
A spokeswoman said Friday that all employees at the closed locations will be given severance payments.
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“Closing a restaurant is a difficult decision. It was based purely on business circumstances and has no reflection on employees or their service,” said Elizabeth Watts, the company’s media-relations director.
Bloomin’ Brands announced its latest financial results Friday. They show the company’s total sales fell by about $45 million in the fourth quarter of 2016 from the same period a year earlier, to just over $1 billion. That represents a 4.3 percent drop in revenue, the company reported.
Company-owned Carrabba’s total sales dropped by 2.3 percent year to year, Bonefish Grill’s were off by 1.9 percent and Outback’s fell by 4.8 percent, according to its financial statement.