Food court restaurant owner MTY lays off workers and suspends dividend

MTY Food Group Inc. has suspended its quarterly dividend, temporarily laid off over half of its workforce and reduced the base salaries of its leadership team.

The owner of brands such as Thai Express, Tiki-Ming, Tutti Frutti and Valentine says approximately 2,100 restaurants in its network have temporarily closed while the rest are operating in a reduced capacity due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

MTY says most of its corporate restaurants are closed, with the exception of those operating under the Papa Murphy’s brand.

Last month, MTY said it would postpone the collection of royalties from franchisees for four weeks in an effort to help those affected by the steps taken to slow the spread of COVID-19.

The Montreal-based company franchises and operates fast food and casual restaurants under more than 80 different banners in Canada, the United States and elsewhere.

It expects to file its first-quarter financial results by May 15.