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Las Vegan buys Elephant Bar Restaurant chain out of bankruptcy

Updated March 28, 2018 - 10:17 am

Las Vegas restaurateur Billy Richardson has acquired the Elephant Bar chain out of bankruptcy.

Richardson, founder of Gen3 Hospitality, operates The Barrymore, Flour & Barley, Haute Doggery and other restaurants. His latest addition has a location at The District at Green Valley Ranch in Henderson, along with one in New Mexico and five in California.

Elephant Bar filed for Chapter 11 protection in October in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Las Vegas. The chain also went bankrupt in 2014, though under different owners, and its restaurant tally shrank drastically in recent years.

Richardson completed the purchase about a month ago. His group did not disclose the terms.

In a phone interview Tuesday, he said Elephant Bar is profitable, and he does not have plans to close or open any locations.

But he is planning “a little refresher,” including new fabrics, wall coverings and paint, he said.

He does not plan to change the restaurant chain’s name or menu, which includes pistachio crusted salmon salad, shrimp and chicken jambalaya, caramelized pear and Gorgonzola burger, and such desserts as “gooey butter cake.”

“It’s a place for everyone to go to. That’s what I like about the business,” Richardson said.

He also blamed its prior woes on growing too fast, noting it “was like everything” before the recession hit: Rapid expansion was followed by the worst economic meltdown in decades.

“They opened too many (locations) at one time and just couldn’t manage it,” he said.

Elephant Bar had 45 locations shortly before its 2014 bankruptcy under then-owner S.B. Restaurant Co. of Costa Mesa, California.

Dallas-based Chalak Mitra Group then acquired the chain, and court records show that New York businessman Barry Kasoff picked it up last May.

But five months later, Kasoff — whose online biography describes him as a “turnaround management expert” — pushed Elephant Bar into bankruptcy.

Contact Eli Segall at esegall@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0342. Follow @eli_segall on Twitter.

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