Jamie Oliver's restaurant group confirms closure of 12 UK locations

The Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group confirmed Monday it will be closing 12 of its 37 UK locations.

Rumor of the closures went around last week, but a spokesperson for the group told The Sun no final decision had been made after admitting they were “exploring plans to restructure its Jamie’s Italian restaurant estate.”

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The restaurant group issued a statement officially announcing the closures, saying the decision comes after a “strategic review to ensure the business is in good shape for the future.”

“The remaining 25 sites in the UK will be unaffected by this decision and will continue to trade normally. This announcement does not affect Jamie’s Italian franchises managed through Jamie’s Italian International. The Jamie Oliver Media Group and the Jamie Oliver Licensing Group, which are both managed and run separately, are also unaffected,” the statement reads.

Last year, Oliver closed down seven of his Italian restaurants and his Union Jack pizza chain, according to The Sun. His restaurants reportedly lost $13 million last year and made a profit of $3.3 million the year before.

Jon Knight, CEO of the Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group, said the decision to close the 12 restaurants was not an easy one, but “it’s a crucial step to ensure our strong and much-loved brand can continue to serve our loyal customers,” Eater reports.

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“We will look to redeploy as many staff as possible within the wider restaurant group. All staff impacted will be paid fully and all our obligations to them fulfilled. We’re incredibly grateful to the dedication and hard work of every single member of staff.” he added.

Michelle Gant is a writer and editor for Fox News Lifestyle. Follow her on Twitter @Michelleleegant