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Friendly’s Ice Cream Corp. May File Chapter 11

WILBRAHAM, Mass. (WGGB) — Friendly’s is reportedly getting ready to file for bankruptcy. The Wall Street Journal reports the Wilbraham based restaurant chain could also be for sale.

The Friendly’s Ice Cream Corporation employs about 10,000 people and runs more than 500 restaurants.

Friendly’s has been the property of Florida-based Sun Capital Partners since 2007. Sun is also a Friendly’s creditor, as is Wells Fargo. According to the Journal Friendly’s has been crippled by rising prices for common ingredients such as corn and butter. This at a time of declining sales, as customers dine out less frequently.

Thursday night Friendly’s spokesperson Maura Tobias released that said:

“Friendly’s has a policy of not commenting on rumors in the media or marketplace. Like many restaurant chains, we are feeling the impact of the economic downturn and rising commodity prices and a challenging marketplace. We are working with our lenders, board and management team to explore alternatives to strengthen our financial base.  Our High 5 initiative continues to do well. It is business as usual at our restaurants, our manufacturing and distribution facilities. What we do know is that we have a great Company, a great workforce and our owners are committed to the long term future of Friendly’s.”

To read the full Wall Street Journal article visit: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204138204576601232726499962.html