Operators have been reaching out to the staff who have lost their jobs in the collapse of Jamie Oliver’s restaurant group.
Among them is Martin Williams, chief executive of Gaucho and M Restaurants, who today offered any interested former employees of Oliver’s a fast track to final interview.
Commenting on the move, Williams said: “We are all too familiar with how challenging it is in this industry in our current economic and political climate and I am deeply sorry to hear about the collapse of a much-loved and well-respected restaurant group.
“With every administration comes a devastating amount of job losses. We recognise the skill and determination that those working for the group have and I believe many of these individuals, (who we consider as friends) will be a fantastic fit for Gaucho and M Restaurants. Great and passionate people with an inherent understanding of hospitality and what Jamie Oliver’s group stood for – these hospitality heroes will always be welcome at our restaurants.”
Of Oliver’s 25 UK sites, 22 closed on the appointment of administrators KPMG earlier this week, resulting in 1,000 people losing their jobs.
The Restaurant Group’s Frankie & Benny’s brand has offered a guaranteed phone interview to former employees of Oliver’s restaurants, asking them to send CVs to firstname.lastname@example.org with ‘Jobs for Jamie’ in the subject line.
Jamie Barber of Haché burger group, Cabana and Hush in Mayfair has also offered help to those searching for new employment.
He tweeted: “We are so devastated for staff, suppliers, Jamie Oliver and everyone at Jamie’s Italian. Jamie’s was a trailblazer and upped the game for the whole sector. If any of the amazing talented staff need help finding jobs, pls get in touch.”
Moshimo sushi restaurant in Brighton also tweeted to say it was looking for chefs, kitchen porters and front of house staff, inviting applications.
Bill’s restaurants said it had also been in touch with the team at Jamie Oliver’s Restaurant Group and “have already managed to place a number of team members in Bill’s restaurants”.
It made the statement after coming under fire for posting a notice at the entrance of a Jamie’s Italian branch in Soho reading: “We’re sorry to hear the news about Jamie’s, as fellow restaurateurs we do not want any guest to be disappointed that their booking cannot go ahead, and we will happily accept any bookings.”
As reported in the i, the group tweeted: “This was a very short term measure to avoid any inconvenience.” It added that the notice would be taken down.