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CPK emerges from Chapter 11 bankruptcy after debt-for-equity swap

Pizza chain to focus on health-forward menu in next chapter

California Pizza Kitchen (CPK) has emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy, having finalized its restructuring process and wiped $220M from its debt load. As a result, the Los Angeles, Calif.-based restaurant company appears to have increased liquidity and improved capital structure.

According to CPK, it faces no near-term debt maturities, and the company also secured exit financing as it completed a debt-for-equity transaction as part of the reorganization.

A group of creditors, including debt-lien holders, as well as its previous investors, agreed to the restructuring. Lien holders were advised by Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP on legal matters, and FTI Consulting, Inc. provided financial advice on the transaction.

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As it enters a new chapter, CPK is doubling down on a Cali Health menu that will lean toward better-for-you dishes. The recently-introduced BBQ Don’t Call Me Chicken Pizza is an example.

In addition, the casual-dining pizza chain announced increased investment in marketing and digital technology, with a goal of cementing its off-premises strategy.

“We want to thank our partners, creditors and equity holders for helping make our emergence plan so successful,” said Jim Hyatt, chief executive of CPK. “We are a stronger and healthier company as a result of the restructuring and we look forward to delivering more of our innovative, California-inspired cuisine to our loyal CPK guest community.”

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Kirkland & Ellis served as legal counsel to CPK, while Guggenheim Securities, LLC served as its financial advisor and investment banker. Furthermore, Alvarez & Marsal, Inc. served as restructuring advisor.

Nearly all equity will now be held by CPK’s pre-petition lenders.

[California Pizza Kitchen marks Manila, Daegu, Salt Lake City restaurant openings]

Photo credit: California Pizza Kitchen (featured preview image)

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