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Near bankruptcy a ‘steep learning curve' for Paul Rankin

01 April 2009 by
Near bankruptcy a ‘steep learning curve' for Paul Rankin

Celebrity chef Paul Rankin has spoken of his relief over having bankruptcy proceedings against him dismissed, saying the experience had been a "steep learning curve".

The Ready Steady Cook star, who was forced to sell most of his restaurants last year, was served with bankruptcy papers in February over unpaid debts owed to supplier Arnotts Fruit.

However, the petition against Rankin and his wife and business partner Jeanne was dropped after an agreement was reached with creditors. The couple have entered into an Individual Voluntary Agreement with Arnotts Fruit, with set repayments to be made over the next five years.

Rankin, who won Northern Ireland's first Michelin star in 1991, was forced to sell his Roscoff Brasserie and his Rankin Café chain last year and now only operates his flagship Cayenne restaurant in Belfast.

He told Caterersearch at the launch of the London City Hospitality Centre on Monday (30 March) that the IVA arrangement had "always been on the cards".

"It's been a steep learning curve and I've learned a lot about myself over the last four years," he said. "I got caught up in expanding the restaurants and was taken away from the food and cooking. I lost sight of what was important."

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By Gemma Sharkey and Kerstin Kühn

E-mail your comments to Gemma Sharkey here.

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