Steak ‘n Shake permanently shutters 51 stores in first quarter

Most of the chain’s dining rooms were closed by March 17

Steak ‘N Shake is losing dozens of its locations due to financial woes.

SAN ANTONIOEditor’s note: This story was published through a partnership between the San Antonio Business Journal and KSAT.

Steak ‘n Shake permanently closed 51 restaurants in the first quarter as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a quarterly report from its San Antonio-based parent company.

Biglari Holdings Inc. (NYSE: BH) reported a $137.9 million loss in the first quarter, primarily driven by investments in Tennessee-based Cracker Barrel (NASDAQ: CBRL). Biglari’s restaurants, Steak ‘n Shake and Western Sizzlin’, remained in the red but lost less in the first quarter this year — $7.9 million, as opposed to its $13.3 million loss last year.

Most of the two chain’s dining rooms were closed by March 17, with all closing by the end of the first quarter March 31 as state and local governments closed dining rooms across the country to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

62 restaurants were temporarily closed as of March 31, compared to 44 at the same time last year that closed due to poor sales and service.

The quarterly report did not include a list of impacted locations. Steak 'n Shake did not immediately respond to the Business Journal's request for additional information.

Biglari Holdings Founder and Chairman Sardar Biglari in February described “dismal” performance by Steak ‘n Shake in his annual report. Food sales in the first quarter, which ended March 31, decreased 41% from 2019.

Steak ‘n Shake continues to shift away from company-operated stores to those operated by franchisees, with 11 transitioned in the first quarter.

Read more on this story at the San Antonio Business Journal.