August 10, 2019 1:29 pm

4th Perkins closes in Winnipeg as restaurants face ‘challenges’

Pancakes with maple syrup on a set table

Pancakes with maple syrup on a set table

Lew Robertson / Getty Images
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It’s been tough going for some restaurants in Winnipeg this year.

The Perkins on Madison Street closed this week, making it the fourth Perkins to shut down since last fall.

In a media release on Monday, the Perkins parent company said it was closing 10 underperforming locations. The company also announced it wants to sell the business and has started bankruptcy proceedings.

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Shawn Jeffrey, executive director of the Manitoba Restaurant and Food Services Association, says the problems facing Perkins are fairly common.

“We have heard that they’ve had some challenges with building, leases and viability and so forth, and it’s not just that specific restaurant chain, to be honest,” he said.

“It’s a challenge that a lot of our restaurant members are facing on a daily basis. We’ve had some closures in the last year that are pretty notable.”

Jeffrey says the key to success in the restaurant industry is staying fresh and re-engaging your customers on a regular basis.

READ MORE: Downtown Winnipeg restaurant The Pint closing its doors in February

“Manitoba has very diverse restaurant options for customers,” he said. “There’s a decent amount of customers out there. If you can get your message out on some of the formal channels like social media and advertising, or engagements in the community and getting out at events, you’re going to have a better chance of getting your message out and keeping people coming to your place of business.”

He said keeping customers happy is also important because of the power of word of mouth.

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