Only 27 Boston Markets Are Still Standing

The only remaining Boston Market locations may be just weeks away from shuttering.

Boston Market is hanging on by a thread, and it looks like the strands are only getting thinner. Restaurant Business reports that following a bankruptcy filing, countless legal woes, and yet another (attempted) bankruptcy filing, the quick-service rotisserie chicken chain is down to its last 27 locations, and it might only survive another few weeks or months.

Boston Market’s troubles, explained

Boston Market began 2023 with approximately 300 locations, but has since shuttered the vast majority of its restaurants due to various business and legal troubles. Most recently, the company lost an $11.9 million lawsuit to one of its distributors, US Foods, which sued Boston Market for unpaid bills. A judge ruled in the distributor's favor, determining that Boston Market had "intentionally dodged their obligations to the court."

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US Foods then followed up by filing another complaint against Boston Market for additional debt, late fees, accrued interest, and attorney fees. This filing totals to around $30.7 million and is still ongoing. US Foods is just one of the many parties that have taken legal action against Boston Market over the past couple of years, with claims ranging from unpaid bills to unpaid employee wages to unpaid rent for its leased locations.

Meanwhile, Boston Market owner Jay Pandya has filed for bankruptcy twice, and in both instances the filing was terminated by a judge. The first time, the filing was terminated because Pandya failed to provide insurance documents for properties he owned, and the second filing was terminated because Pandya failed to meet certain court deadlines. In fact, Pandya has now been banned by the judge from filing again for at least six months.

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Boston Market’s attempted comeback

In the midst of these legal battles, Boston Market made a concerted effort to regrow its footprint, one that could even read as desperate, given the circumstances. Boston Market announced in early 2024 its new program allowing virtually anyone to open a franchise location, removing almost every barrier to entry. Those hoping to become franchise operators can now do so without any buy-in requirements; instead, prospective franchisees need only fill out a fairly vague questionnaire.

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In that same announcement, Boston Market noted that it would be focusing on opening more "non-traditional locations," such as "within your restaurant, deli, gas station, or any suitable establishment." It seems pretty clear that this chain knows brick-and-mortar locations will not be enough to keep the brand going.

"Restaurants are closing every day," a former Boston Market employee told Restaurant Business. The publication was provided with a list of open Boston Market restaurants which included just 27 locations, and several employees confirmed the number. Restaurant Business also notes that the company has been sued over 150 times, both state and federal suits, since Pandya took over in 2020.

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At this point, it seems as though Boston Market is essentially burnt to a crisp, but is still being slow-roasted. It's getting harder and harder to watch.

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