Brad Austin Discusses COVID-19 Impact on Restaurants in The Wall Street Journal

March 17, 2020

The Wall Street Journal quoted Charlotte partner Brad Austin in a March 16, 2020, story about the impact the coronavirus epidemic is having on the U.S. restaurant industry.

The article focuses on the decision by McDonald’s Corp. to close dining rooms at its company-owned restaurants and ask franchisees to follow suit. Even before the coronavirus outbreak, many restaurants were struggling to attract diners because of increased competition and new options such as meal kits and takeout from grocery stores, the article noted.

Austin, leader of McGuireWoods’ food and beverage industry team, said independent restaurants are even more vulnerable than chains when it comes to dealing with the pandemic’s impact.

“They feel the effect first because there are few, if any, reserves to absorb a disruption,” he said.