No Signboard: Received letters of demand for unpaid rent

The No Signboard Seafood outlet at VivoCity mall in Singapore; taken in 2018.The No Signboard Seafood outlet at VivoCity mall in Singapore; taken in 2018.

No Signboard Holdings has received letters demand seeking rental arrears from two of its locations, the iconic operator of Singapore chilli-crab restaurants said in a filing to SGX Thursday. 

“The board is of the view that these claims will have a material adverse impact on the financial position and performance of the group,” the company said. 

Solicitors acting for Frasers Property Centrepoint, the landlord for the Centrepoint location at Orchard Road, have demanded around S$12,161 for rental and other arrears, for the Hawker QSR outlet, the filing said. 

In addition, solicitors acting for Milano Central, the landlord for the Paya Lebar Quarter location occupied by Hawker QSR, are seeking around S$163,966 for rental and other arrears, the filing said.

At Paya Lebar Quarter, No Signboard operates a Mom’s Touch outlet, which is a South Korean chicken and burger fast-food restaurant. While the area has a significant residential catchment, the surrounding office buildings have seen a sharp drop in activity during mandatory work-from-home periods over the past year to stem the spread of the Covid virus.

No Signboard said it has retained legal counsel to advise the group on the claims. 

Hit by Covid restrictions

In January, No Signboard suspended trading in its shares as it was unable to show how it can continue as a going concern after a deal to place new shares with an investor was terminated.

The restauranteur has been hard-hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, as limits on group sizes and border controls dented visitation to its family-style dining outlets.  

In November, when the fiscal year results were released, the chilli crab maker said: “Till the end of FY2021, the group’s revenue continues to be impacted by the travel restrictions and safe distancing regulations implemented due to the Covid-19 pandemic as the outlets are not able to operate on the same level as prior to the onset of Covid-19 and the ongoing travel restrictions have significantly reduced the tourist footfall at our seafood outlets.”

No Signboard had also said the beer business had been hit by closures of outlets where the beer was distributed, with many of those outlets remaining closed.