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January 1, Major Pizza Chain Abruptly Indiana Locations: Franchise Battle and Modernization Woes Drive Closures



Over a dozen Pizza Hut locations in northwestern Indiana have abruptly closed down earlier this month. These 15 restaurants were operated by franchisee EYM Group, according to The Times of Northwest Indiana.

The sudden closures come amid an ongoing legal battle between EYM Group and Pizza Hut. Both parties are accusing each other of contract breaches. Pizza Hut filed a lawsuit on June 7, alleging that EYM Group had breached its franchise agreement and a subsequent forbearance agreement reached in 2023.

The pizza chain claimed that EYM had a “history of late paying fees owed to Pizza Hut and other interested entities pursuant to the Franchise Agreements.” It also stated that EYM defaulted on them in several instances. EYM Group, on the other hand, accused Pizza Hut of not fulfilling its own contract obligations.

Among EYM’s allegations were that Pizza Hut “failed to adapt to modern business practices” and “keep up with new technology.” This negatively impacted EYM and its financial situation. The franchisee also cited inflation and COVID as exacerbating factors.

Dozens of other Pizza Hut locations operated by EYM Group could potentially face operational halts. A Pizza Hut spokesperson told FOX Business, “While a few EYM franchise-operated restaurants in Indiana have temporarily closed, Pizza Hut remains committed to providing outstanding service and products to our valued customers.”

The spokesperson added that the company is working on transitioning these locations and expects many of them to reopen soon. EYM Group also operates Pizza Hut restaurants in Georgia, Wisconsin, and a few other states. They also manage franchises for other fast-food brands like Denny’s, KFC, and Panera Bread.

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