Real owner of Burger King bloated with cash while suppliers, lenders and employees face losses – Unite Union

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“The lockdown may have been the final straw but the responsibility for the Burger King receivership lies squarely with it’s current owners – the Blackstone Group. They are the largest private equity firm in the world and have been interested in one thing – how much cash they could extract form the business each and every year.”
“Long serving employees all tell the same story – there was a noticeable change when Blackstone took over. They simply were not interested in building the business and investment – it was all about squeezing cash from the business. Now they are just going to walk away, leaving employees, banks and suppliers to suffer the consequences. If there are job losses and business failures then, of course, taxpayers will be also have to pay as well.”
“This is not about a business owner unable to pay their bills.  The true owner, according to this Forbes article, is actually flush with almost two hundred billion dollars of capital and well positioned to dramatically increase their wealth amongst the current Covid19 economic chaos. The CEO, Stephen Schwarzman, is estimated to have personal wealth of NZ$ 31 billion. Instead of spending his money on extravagant parties like this , he could easily bail out Burger King New Zealand and spare suppliers and employees hardship they may face in very uncertain times.”
“The evidence for previous recessions is clear – fast food businesses will likely bounce back strongly, especially as the majority of the business has been drive-through and takeaway for some time, more suited to prolonged social distancing rules than almost any other food supplier. “
“KFC, Pizza Hut, McDonalds and Wendys are in exactly the same market situation as Burger King. The difference is those companies have a mostly New Zealand based ownership that is committed long term to their businesses, not just grabbing cash and running. There is a clear global trend for shareholders and owners of large corporates to enrich themselves with buybacks and other payments, leaving the businesses with higher debt, much weaker balance sheets and fewer reserves to cope with crises.”
“We’ve seen SkyCity and Fletcher’s do exactly that and now the fate of Burger King shows what the consequences are,”
Unite Union Media release

13 COMMENTS

  1. The good news is that someone else will buy it and hopefully they give afark.
    I noticed years ago how badly run down their stores are.

  2. Guess who the new buyer will be, the same company with a new name. Its a way of passing on the the risk to the NZ tax payer while they sit on the side lines till this is over. Congratulations to all the scum accountants and lawyers taking their cut so that they can make it happen. That’s right, clip the ticket and take the money!
    Gets you a new merc to park in the driveway so the neighbours can all gloat at your success.

  3. The bad news is the massive social costs and that all those someone else’s suffer while that Stephen Schwarzman prick gets away with it to go on and shit all over other peoples lives and not give afark.

  4. A “Zombie” company? Profits held offshore with no way for the local company to claw-back any of the exported profits in times like these. Some legislation needs to be put in place to circumvent the “Zombie-Owners” ole switch-a-roo with the profits generated here in NZ.

    A percentage of the profits ‘should’ remain here that will cover employees severance pay+ if the owners decide to pullout, or try this kind shite.

    But, I guess we’d need a government with some balls … unlike this current one in NZ.

    • NZ is “the best place in the world for business” because our tax laws are full of loopholes. The IRD can’t be fucked chasing down big corporates (& lets Aussie banks rob Kiwis blind) but if you’re a sole trader or have a small biz they will hunt you down. And if you’re a wages worker you bet you have to pay PAYE and GST and there’s no tax rebates or fringe benefits for you.

      Cancel GST. Cancel all income tax up to $25K. Tax wealth and finance and property you useless government fuckers.

    • Denny what a cheek the National Party had no balls whatsoever they favoured the rich at the expense of the middle class and poor. You rally need to research your own statements so you can put some truth into them…..

    • Well nothing is certain in life except the fact a National government have no balls to assist employees. They would however bail out big business and finance companies as quick as look at you.

  5. there is alot going for co op structures new zealanders need to think about our collective relationship as customer and workers we need to own our own future

  6. The tragedy is that this release should have had the public scrutiny it deserves like ASB had on Seven Sharp last night.
    The banks and the usual suspects are using this time too market themselves as the friendly team who are going too look after your interests in this hugely worrying time.
    If there was a story worth concentrating on Burger King fits the bill.
    Nothing highlights the cruelty of the Blackstone group and the economic system that encourages this type of disgusting treachery more than this.

    • The tragedy is that this release should have had the public scrutiny it deserves

      Worse – It was misrepresented on Newshub. The story was told without any mention whatsoever of actual ownership of Burger King. The news was delivered as if it was a poor struggling NZ company, struck down down by our draconian policy under Covid-19. Not a word to correct that impression.

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