HERMITAGE — After months of legal battles, the Perkins restaurant on East State Street in Hermitage is closed.
The Hermitage location, 2945 E. State St., had previously been exempted from an cease operations order from the Perkins corporate office to an Allegheny County company that operated 26 local restaurants.
Perkins’ parent corporation, Perkins & Marie Callender’s LLC, of Memphis, Tenn., filed a lawsuit in June against Campbell Land Co., a Monroeville company that owns 26 restaurants in northwestern Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio and New York, including restaurants in Grove City, Meadville, Hempfield Township and New Castle, as well as the Hermitage location.
In the lawsuit, Perkins & Marie Callender alleged that CLC failed to pay more than $2 million in franchise royalties and other fees, and Perkins & Marie Callender terminating CLC’s franchise license in June.
CLC filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, and in July U.S. Bankruptcy Court in western Pennsylvania issued a restraining order preventing CLC from using the Perkins name at their restaurants, though the three Perkins locations in Mercer County were unaffected. The Grove City restaurant abruptly closed last week.
Sherris Moreira, executive director for the Shenango Valley Chamber of Commerce, said Thursday that the news was not particularly surprising, but the closure of any local business was unfortunate.
However, Moreira said the restaurant’s spot on East State Street was a good location, and that she was optimistic that another restaurant would soon occupy the space if Perkins fails to reopen.
“Whether it reopens under the same name or under another iteration, we think there’s still future potential at that location,” Moreira said. “Hermitage is great at touting and promoting the area and their city.”
Attempts to reach Robert O. Lampl, the attorney for CLC, for comment were unsuccessful.