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NYC Vegan Hotshot By Chloe Files for Bankruptcy Protection

The fast-casual chain is currently up for sale

Customers wait outside in a line to go into vegan fast casual restaurant by Chloe in Greenwich Village
By Chloe on Bleecker Street
Erika Adams is the editor of Eater Boston.

Local vegan fast-casual chain By Chloe has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection with plans to sell the company, citing economic hardship due to the pandemic. Bloomberg first reported the news.

Revenue has plummeted by 67 percent at the company since February, according to Bloomberg. Over half of the chain’s staff has been furloughed or laid off. Out of the group’s nine NYC locations, three remain temporarily shuttered, including By Chloe’s original West Village shop. The chain operates 14 locations overall across the U.S.

The chain has listed assets of $10 million to $50 million, and liabilities of $1 million to $10 million, Bloomberg reports. The company hopes to lock in a sale by mid-February. It plans to keep operating through the bankruptcy and sale proceedings.

By Chloe was founded in NYC in 2015 by well-known chef Chloe Coscarelli and Samantha Wasser. The peppy, popular brand was an early success, attracting a celebrity following and riding high on a wave of interest in vegan food, before other mainstream fast food chains started expanding their menus to offer more vegan options.

However, two years into the venture, Coscarelli was ousted from the company, kicking off years of legal drama between the chef and the restaurant’s parent group BC Hospitality Group.

Prior to the pandemic, By Chloe was seemingly on a growth trajectory. The chain had secured an investment of $31 million in early 2018 from various groups to kickstart a global expansion plan that included 20 more locations over the next two years. The company currently runs 19 locations overall, including one in Canada and four in London, according to its website.

Now, By Chloe follows in the footsteps of several well-known chains that have declared bankruptcy and sold themselves off during the pandemic. French bakery Maison Kayser filed for bankruptcy for its NYC locations in September, while Le Pain Quotidien filed for bankruptcy for its U.S. operation in May. Both were sold off to NYC-based hospitality company Aurify Brands.

Ice cream purveyor Ample Hills declared bankruptcy prior to the pandemic but completed the sale process during the first couple of months of the crisis. A Oregon-based manufacturing company bought the beloved chain for $1 million in June.