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200 jobs lost as Aussie restaurant chain that sells $500 steaks collapses

Botswana Butchery has closed its doors in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra due to 'significant cash losses'.

Hundreds of staff at an Australian restaurant chain have lost their jobs after its parent company fell into voluntary administration. The Botswana Butchery franchise, located in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra, has ceased trading this week due to "significant cash losses".

The venues offer up-market dishes, including caviar, freshly shucked oysters, and a gold leaf-covered 1.6kg Wagyu Tomahawk steak that will set you back $500. The move to close the three restaurants is expected to affect around 200 employees.

Insolvency firm BDO was appointed as administrators to help the restaurants' parent company, Good Group Australia, find a way forward. BDO told Yahoo Finance shutting down the three Botswana Butchery venues was the only viable solution.

insert of chef cooking a steak next to a gold leaf-plated steak
Administrators have called for Good Group Australia, which owns the three Botswana Butchery restaurants in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra, to cease trading after it fell into voluntary administration. (Source: Instagram)

Do you have a story? Email stew.perrie@yahooinc.com

"Prior to and during the Voluntary Administration, the group’s shareholders funded the trading costs of the group’s Australian operations, in an effort to turn around the group’s operations," it said in a statement.

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"Due to the significant cash losses being incurred in operating the restaurants, the group’s shareholders are no longer able to fund the ongoing trading and restructuring costs."

Good Group Australia was plunged into voluntary administration last month and a report of the company's finances revealed the depths of how much it owed to various entities.

The company, which billed itself as "one of Australia and New Zealand’s largest and most successful food and beverage businesses", owed more than $1.8 million in unpaid rent, as well as $4.5 million to other creditors, and $9.3 million in inter-company loans.

There was also more than $500,000 in unpaid annual leave and long service leave entitlements to staff and workers were also owed $92,000 in unpaid superannuation.

The report revealed Good Group Australia owes $23 million in total.

A deed of company arrangement (DOCA) is being finalised, which could see creditors get some of this owed money back.

BDO has confirmed customers with pre-paid restaurant vouchers or reservations will be provided a full refund or voucher for the group’s New Zealand restaurants. Further details are available on the restaurants’ website.

"The group’s Directors would like to express their gratitude to the group’s dedicated staff for their invaluable contribution to the business," BDO's statement to Yahoo Finance continued.

Two White and Wong's restaurants, as well as a Wong Baby venue, which were both under the Good Group Australia banner, have also recently ceased trading.

BDO said Good Group's operations in New Zealand aren't affected by its Australian arm's financial woes.

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