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Piccadilly Restaurants Returns to Chapter 11

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Sept. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Piccadilly Restaurants LLC filed for bankruptcy to prevent the secured lender from having a receiver appointed.

The Baton Rouge, Louisiana-based company has 86 restaurants and 78 institutional food-service customers. Lender Atalaya Capital Management LP started a lawsuit in state court last week to appoint a receiver, Piccadilly said in a filing yesterday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Lafayette, Louisiana.

Atalaya, based in New York, acquired the secured debt in April, according to a court filing. Secured debt includes $6.9 million on a revolving credit, $2.9 million on a letter of credit facility, and $16 million on a term loan.

Another $5.5 million is owed to trade suppliers, the company said. Total assets and debt are both less than $50 million, according to the Chapter 11 petition.

Atalaya officials didn’t immediately return a call for comment on the bankruptcy filing.

Piccadilly has arranged for $5 million in financing from an affiliate of the owner. If approved by the bankruptcy judge, the new loan would have a lien on assets ahead of Atalaya.

Piccadilly has been in bankruptcy reorganization before. It filed a Chapter 11 petition in October 2003 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, sold the business, and confirmed a Chapter 11 plan in October 2004.

The prior bankruptcy spawned a case that went to the U.S. Supreme Court, establishing a rule that a company in bankruptcy can’t escape paying transfer taxes unless a sale takes place as part of a Chapter 11 plan.

The case is In re Piccadilly Restaurants LLC, 12-51127, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Western District of Louisiana (Lafayette).

To contact the reporter on this story: Bill Rochelle in New York at wrochelle@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Pickering at jpickering@bloomberg.net