Novelli business collapse

LAST UPDATED: 3 Jun, 2009 @ 09:43
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Novelli business collapse

Marbella’s new celebrity chef leaves creditors burnt

CELEBRITY chef Jean-Christophe Novelli, who has recently opened a restaurant in Puerto Banus, has seen his UK gastropub business collapse owing over one million euros.

The Michelin-starred French chef has left the company behind two gastropubs owing over 600,000 euros to traders, creditors and HM Revenue and Customs it was reported.

The directors of the company Sweet Medicine, which had two restaurants called A Touch of Novelli, lost over 500,000 euros of share premiums.

Novelli, 47, claims he sold his shares in September but continued to act as a consultant, designing menus and lending his name to the restaurants at the White Horse in Hertfordshire, and the French Horn in Bedfordshire.

Jean-Christophe Novelli at the White Horse in Hertfordshire
Jean-Christophe Novelli at the White Horse in Hertfordshire
His company, Novelli Associates, is owed £35,000.

The administrator confirmed that none of the creditors is likely to be paid.

His previous business ventures have not done well in the UK. In 1998, despite having four Michelin stars he found his chain of seven restaurants collapse due to bad business acumen.

Earlier this month Novelli opened a restaurant in Puerto Banus and is opening a cooking academy here in Spain, where pupils must pay up to 995 euros a day for tuition.

So far he has been inundated with interest from women, but has few men.

He said: “It is a huge compliment that so many women have already made enquiries about my new cooking academy.

“But it is an even bigger compliment when men are willing to learn from me.”

Novelli, who has bought and sold two houses in Ronda, is looking to buy a new home in the area.

His spokesman said: “It was not his company, it was never his pubs – he never owned them.”

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