Male waiter in uniform, white shirt is holding white sheet of paper with inscription Sorry we are closed announcing closure restaurant due Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic, staff lost job, reduction

Ultimate List Of Businesses That Have Closed Down, Declared Bankrupt, Or Became Insolvent During Covid-19

Alvin Chow
Alvin Chow

I wanted to keep a list of companies that became insolvent since the start of Covid-19 period. I have made use of media reports as well as company sources to verify their status.

Some of these businesses have decided to close for good and undergo liquidation processes, selling off their assets for as much cash as they could get. Others have filed for court protection against creditors to give them ample time to work out a get well plan. I have included companies in both of these scenarios.

On many occassions, we cannot simply put a blame on Covid-19 for these business problems. Some of the businesses have faced issues way before Covid-19 struck. It could be due to intense competition or a lack of product-market fit. Covid-19 was just a nail to the coffin.

I segmented the list to 5 parts as some industries such as F&B, airlines and retail had more cases.

  • Singapore – F&B
  • Singapore – Others
  • International – Airlines
  • International – Retail
  • International – Others

Most importantly, this is NOT meant to be a list of shame. In fact, it is the opposite – let’s salute these entrepreneurs who have taken the risks to build something for our society.

I tried to incorporate their stories as much as possible. Businesses are run by real people, with passion, blood, sweat and tears. Their enterprises may be gone, but their stories live on.

FInd out how defensive portfolios weather the Covid-19 virus in this post.

SINGAPORE F&B

#1 – Jok Jok Mor (18 Mar 2020)

Jok Jok Mor’s Facebook Photo

Jok Jok Mor (which means “Porridge in a Pot” in Thai) is a casual Thai restaurant that offers authentic Thai porridge served with a twist. Used to ply its trade at Rangoon Road.

#2 – Chi Kinjo (28 Mar 2020)

Chi Kinjo’s Facebook Photo

A modern sushi and highball bar nestled in the CBD area.

It was part of the portfolio restaurants under Coterie Dining Concepts. The company was run by sisters Sharon and Sandra Sim, and Tay Eu-Yen. Besides Chi Kinjo, Coterie has Sum Yi Tai, Mona Lounge, and club Eliza under its wing.

#3 – La Cantina in Venezia (28 Mar 2020)

La Cantina in Venezia’s Facebook Photo

Located at the rooftop of Village Hotel Changi, the Italian restaurant has been operating for 17 years. Nicholas Lim is the founder and he said that business has already fallen by as much as 70 per cent just before the circuit breaker.

#4 – Tian Wei Seafood (29 Mar 2020)

Tian Wei Seafood’s Facebook Photo

Even staple zichar food was not spared. Tian Wei Seafood stall was operating at Tagore Lane. Probably as workers stayed home, they lost the crowd during lunch hours.

#5 – Breko Cafe (31 Mar 2020)

Breko’s Facebook Photo

One of the popular hunts in Holland Village. They have been operating for 20 years!

I managed to dig out an interview with the founder, Kang Soo Koon. You can read about his entrepreneurship journey,

For Breko, we opened 4 outlets and closed 3 of them. I do not consider that as an achievement. But as time goes by, I was proud that I was able to keep a team of staff that has stuck with me through thick and thin for over 10 years. After a lot of tough lessons, we managed to pull through and opened subsidiaries of Breko such as Refuel cafe at Bedok Reservoir and Fuel Plus café at Morse Road. Therefore, my proudest business achievements are that I have a loyal team of staff and the expansion of the business.

#6 – Long Time Ago (31 Mar 2020)

L.T.A’s Facebook Photo

The founder of this pub, Yvonne Yeo, told her side of her story. She was evicted by the landlord for missing rent even when her deposit could more than cover for the amount owed.

#7 – Oromo Coffee (31 Mar 2020)

Oromo Coffee’s Facebook Photo

Toh Ee Ming is the founder of Oromo Coffee and his self-ordering initiative was commended by PM Lee at the launch of National Productivity Month. Besides this cafe, he owns a Subway franchise too.

#8 – Kuishin Bo (3 Apr 2020)

Kuishin Bo’s Facebook Photo

It was more than 10 years ago when I first dined at Kuishin Bo with my Air Force buddies. I had a great experience and I will always remember the iconic announcement whenever a special dish is available.

#9 – Peppercorn (25 Apr 2020)

Peppercorn’s Facebook Photo

A rare Ma La Tang establishment that’s Halal certified.

#10 – Hashida Sushi (30 Apr 2020)

Hashida Sushi’s Facebook Photo

Lifebrandz (SGX:1D3) is the parent company of Hashida Sushi and made the following announcement on 4 May 2020,

The Company noted the impact of the Enhanced Measures on Hashida Sushi as stated above
and performed a strategic review of the viability of Hashida Sushi. It has decided to permanently
close Hashida Sushi with effect from 30 April 2020

#11 – High Steaks (30 Apr 2020)

High Steaks’ Facebook Photo

A steakhouse along Sembawang Road.

#12 – SG Pho House (7 May 2020)

SG PHO HOUSE’s Facebook Photo

I believe the founder is a Vietnamese as the Facebook writing seems like it was translated from another language. Saw good reviews on many food websites.

#13 – Jekyll & Hyde (14 May 2020)

Jekyll & Hyde’s Facebook Photo

I patronised the bar with a bunch of financial bloggers. It was a cosy place and I remembered it was pretty packed and finding a spot was tough. Covid-19 was especially tough for the bars. Chua Ee Chien is the founder of Jekyll & Hyde and he shared intimate details about the revenue and costs in this interview.

22 Jun 2020 Update: The story continues. Jekyll & Hyde opened another outlet along Neil Road. Do support them!

#14 – Modesto’s (14 May 2020)

Ashok Melwani is the founder of Modesto’s and had two outlets. One at The Elizabeth Hotel and another at Orchard Rendezvous Hotel. The restaurants have been operating for 17 years and 23 years respectively.

#15 – Maggie Joan’s (21 May 2020)

Maggie Joan’s was reported to have closed.

#16 – Teafolia (1 Jun 2020)

Teafolia’s Facebook Photo

Singaporean’s favourite drink – bubble tea. But still, Teafolia couldn’t survive past the Circuit Breaker period. They are looking for buyers for the business currently.

#17 – D’Underground Bar (1 Jun 2020)

D’Underground’s Facebook Photo

A KTV bar and club located at International Building (Orchard Road), right next to the Thai embassy in Singapore. Shut down after 2 years. D’Underground is owned by Strumm’s Holdings.

#18 – Meats N Malts (1 Jun 2020)

Meat n Malts’ Facebook Photo

Another restaurant under Strumm’s Holdings.

In an interview with Today’s,

A spokesperson from Strumm’s Holding, which owns Meats N Malts, said that most of its customers were office workers in the area and most of them have not returned to work since the circuit breaker.

#19 – Starker (4 Jun 2020)

Starker’s Facebook Photo

This is one of my favourite drinking holes. Freshly brewed unique flavoured beers. Lychee beer anyone? The Starker Group is part of a bigger entity, YSQ International.

#20 – Boufe Boutique Cafe (30 Jun 2020)

Boufe’s Facebook Photo

A very scenic place and some couples have held their wedding ceremonies on the premise. Closing down at the end of Jun 2020.

#21 – The Fabulous Baker Boy (Jul 2020)

The Fabulous Baker Boy’s Facebook Photo

Juwanda Hassim is the founder of The Fabulous Baker Boy and here’s a casual interview to find out more about the man behind this bakery.

#22 – Inspirit House (Aug 2020)

Inspirit House’s Facebook Photo

I love the scenic Punggol Settlement and the eateries are often crowded. I guess Covid-19 killed the crowd. One of the tenants, Inspirit House, is closing their business at the end of Aug 2020. Support them while you can!

SINGAPORE – OTHERS

#23 – Smartly (24 Mar 2020)

Smartly was one of tne earliest roboadvisors in Singapore. The startup was acquired by VinaCapital in 2019 but still couldn’t keep the it going amidst competition from other players.

#24 – HOOQ (30 Apr 2020)

The online video streaming wars have been intensifying with big players like Disney and Apple coming into the space. HOOQ is majority owned by Singtel and the service ended as of 30 Apr 2020.

#25 – HTL (5 May 2020)

HTL website’s photo

A sofa maker. Used to be a listed company but has since filed for insolvency protection (paywall).

#26 – ZenRock (12 May 2020)

Screenshot of ZenRock’s website

ZenRock is in the oil and gas business which has been a struggling industry. It owes more than US$600m and have filed for moratorium relief.

#27 – Hin Leong Trading (12 May 2020)

Screenshot of Hin Leong’s website

This was a juicy story about the founder of Hin Leong, hiding trading losses amounting to over S$1 billion. Hin Leong Trading is a pivotal oil and gas trader in Singapore and now it is placed under judicial management.

#28 – Streetsine (19 May 2020)

A property listing portal and a subsidiary of SPH. Applied for judicial management on 19 May 2020.

#29 – Smove (21 May 2020)

Smove’s Facebook Photo

A car sharing company in Singapore. The business model should work here since cars are expensive. However, Smove was not allowed to operate during the Circuit Breaker period and it could have been too hard for them to survive it. The company is undergoing liquidation now.

#30 – Kidszania Singapore (15 Jun 2020)

This is disastrous news to the children and parents alike.

#31 – Sportslink (3 Jul 2020)

I used to patronise the outlets to get my soccer boots and gears. But I guess it lost its competitive advantage when e-commerce came about. Covid-19 puts a nail in the coffin and Sportslink wound up on 3 Jul 2020 after creditors went after it.

INTERNATIONAL – AIRLINES

#32 – Virgin Australia (21 Apr 2020)

Co-founded by British billionaire Richard Branson and former CEO Brett Godfrey. Virgin Australia is one of the largest airlines operating in Australia. It announced that it will go through voluntary administration on 21 Apr 2020.

#33 – LGW (22 Apr 2020)

Luftfahrgesellschaft Walter or LGW for short, was a German regional airline headquartered in Düsseldorf. Filed for bankruptcy on 22 Apr 2020.

#34 – RavnAir (28 Apr 2020)

RavnAir’s Faebook Photo

A regional airline for the US state of Alaska plans to liquidate.

#35 – Avianca (11 May 2020)

Avianca’s Facebook Photo

Second largest airline in South America. Based in Colombia. Filed for bankruptcy.

#36 – Thai Airways (20 May 2020)

Thai Airways’ Facebook Photo

The national carrier of Thailand. Currently undergoing restructuring of its debt.

#37 – LATAM Air (26 May 2020)

LATAM Air’s Facebook Photo

The largest airline in Latin America. Based in Santiago, Chile, the airline has filed for bankruptcy.

INTERNATIONAL – RETAIL

#38 – Rubie’s Costume Party (4 May 2020)

Rubie’s Facebook Photo

Touted as the worlds largest costume manufacturer & supplier for Halloween has filed for bankruptcy.

#39 – Neiman Marcus (7 May 2020)

Neiman Marcus’s Photo

Neiman Marcus is an American chain of luxury departmental stores and has filed for bankruptcy.

#40 – Aldo (11 May 2020)

Aldo’s Facebook Photo

One of my favourite shoe shops. The Canadian fashion brand has filed for bankruptcy protection.

#41 – John Varvatos (12 May 2020)

John Varvatos’s Photo

With more than US$140 million in debt, menswear fashion John Varvatos, has filed for bankruptcy.

#42 – Modell’s Sporting Goods (12 May 2020)

Modell’s Sporting Goods’ Photo

Modell’s Sporting Goods is an American sporting goods retailer with locations in the Northeastern United States. It has filed bankruptcy.

#43 – JCPenny (15 May 2020)

By Plana96 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

A long troubled American department store chain that has finally threw in the towel and filed for bankruptcy.

#44 – J.Crew (15 May 2020)

By Raysonho @ Open Grid Scheduler / Grid Engine – Own work, CC0

Another American retailer bites the dust. J.Crew filed for bankruptcy.

#45 – Renown (16 May 2020)

Screenshot of Renown website

A Japanese multi-brand apparel company filed for bankruptcy.

#46 – Reitmans (19 May 2020)

By Whpq – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

A Canadian retailing company specializing in women’s clothing has filed for bankruptcy protection.

#47 – Pier 1 Imports (1 Jun 2020)

By Steve Morgan – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

An American home furnishing retailer filed for bankruptcy.

#48 – GNC (23 Jun 2020)

By Raysonho

The supplement retailer has filed for bankruptcy on 23 Jun 2020. Closing 800 out of 1,200 stores and looking to sell the business.

#49 – Brooks Brothers (8 Jul 2020)

Founded in 1818, the well-known retailer has filed for bankruptcy on 8 Jul 2020. It has over 700 stores around the world.

#50 – Muji USA (10 Jul 2020)

By Banej

The minimalist home goods retailer, Muji, has filed for bankruptcy in the US on 10 Jul 2020.

INTERNATIONAL – OTHERS

#51 – Oneweb (28 Mar 2020)

A model of Oneweb’s satellite. By NASA/Kim Shiflett

An internet satellite company based in both UK and US. One of Softbank’s portfolio companies and had successfully launched 74 of the planned 648 satellites before it filed for bankruptcy.

#52 – Whiting Petroleum (2 Apr 2020)

Image From Whiting’s Video

An American shale oil company filed for bankruptcy.

#53 – Motif (18 Apr 2020)

Despite raising US$126.5m, online stock broking firm Motif, couldn’t keep the lights on and had to file for bankruptcy.

#54 – Diamond Offshore Drilling (27 Apr 2020)

An offshore drilling contractor filed for bankruptcy.

#55 – Blu Inc (30 Apr 2020)

Screenshot from Blu Inc Website

A major Malaysian magazine publisher with titles such as Cleo, Her World, Cosmopolitan and Shape has closed down. It is also a subsidiary of SPH.

#56 – Gold’s Gym (5 May 2020)

By Littlegreenfrog – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

An American chain of gyms with over 50 years of operating history has filed for bankruptcy.

#57 – Phoenix Commodities (11 May 2020)

Screenshot of Phoenix Commodities’ Website

An agriculture trader based in UAE is undergoing liquidation.

#58 – Comcar (18 May 2020)

Comcar’s Photo

A trucking service company in the US has filed for bankruptcy.

#59 – Pinehurst (19 May 2020)

Image from Pinehurst’s Video

A manufacturer of store fixtures and architectural millwork for leading luxury retailers around the globe. Some clients include Starbucks, Dior, Longchamp and Chanel. It has filed for bankruptcy.

#60 – Hertz (24 May 2020)

Hertz’s Facebook Photo

Second-largest US car rental company with a 100-year operating history has filed for bankruptcy.

#61 – Shamrock (14 Jun 2020)

Shamrock Hotel’s Facebook Photo

A favourite haunt of Bruce Lee’s family, this historic hotel will be closing and has been put up for sale.

#62 – Wirecard (25 Jun 2020)

By Leo Molatore

Wirecard filed for insolvency on 25 Jun 2020 after declaring US$2.1 billion worth of cash missing from its accounts.

#63 – BBS (20 Jul 2020)

From BBS Facebook

The German wheel manufacturer has filed for insolvency on its 50th anniversary.

P.S. Please let me know if I have missed out other companies or if there are new entries to be added in the comments below.

Alvin Chow
Alvin Chow
CEO of Dr Wealth. Built a business to empower DIY investors to make better investments. A believer of the Factor-based Investing approach and runs a Multi-Factor Portfolio that taps on the Value, Size, and Profitability Factors. Conducts the flagship Intelligent Investor Immersive program under Dr Wealth. An author of Secrets of Singapore Trading Gurus and Singapore Permanent Portfolio. Featured on various media such as MoneyFM 89.3, Kiss92, Straits Times and Lianhe Zaobao. Given talks at events organised by SGX, DBS, CPF and many others.
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7 thoughts on “Ultimate List Of Businesses That Have Closed Down, Declared Bankrupt, Or Became Insolvent During Covid-19”

  1. Permanently Closed: to what I have heard
    The Chophouse
    Hops & Berries
    Purple Turtle
    The Botanic Restaurant
    Miss Chinatown
    7th Mile Seafood
    Isetan Japan Food Town @ Wisma Atria
    Ministry of Food
    Coffee Break @ Singapore
    Chinadoll

    Reply
  2. I don’t know half these shops and brands but reading through the goodbye notes I was overwhelmed by a sense of bereavement. And so, sympathies and condolences and I hope there is a better tomorrow somewhere.

    Reply

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