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Moe & Johnny’s owner files for bankruptcy reorganization

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The owner of a popular Broad Ripple bar is seeking to reorganize its assets under the protection of bankruptcy to help clear debt he incurred from another business interest.

Chuck Mack of Moe & Johnny’s, 5380 N. College Ave., filed for Chapter 11 on Nov. 5 using the corporate name of Charles G. Mack Entertainment Services Inc.

Mack listed the bar’s assets at $118,300 and its liabilities at $922,255. Revenue this year through Oct. 31 was nearly $2 million, according to the court filing.

The largest secured creditor listed is the Indianapolis office of Milwaukee-based M&I Bank, which is owed $163,000.

Another of Mack’s business interests, which he said led to the reorganization, is the redevelopment of Buggs Temple on West 11th Street at the head of the Central Canal in downtown Indianapolis

He and Meridian Asset Development teamed up on the former church building, which opened under its new use in 2007 and houses restaurants Creation Café on the first floor and Euphoria on the second level.

A lack of investors, however, caused Mack to use assets from his bar as collateral to finance parts of the Buggs project, prompting him to seek reorganization, he said.

“It was just a perfect storm that we got caught in,” he said, “and this is the financial cleaning up of all of that.”

Mack said Moe & Johnny’s, which he opened in 1996, is in no danger of closing. Rather, he said he lost money from lease failures at Buggs Temple. He’s not involved in the operation of either restaurant there.

But Mack and his wife were partners in the upscale Tavern at the Temple, which survived about 11 months before closing in 2008.

While volumes were on target for Tavern, investors in the concept didn’t materialize as hoped, IBJ reported in September 2008.

“I wasn’t able to raise any money,” Mack said on Thursday. “We weren’t able to do it financially, so we had to get out of that business.”

Nearly $760,000 of the debt listed in Mack’s bankruptcy filing is unsecured. Of the amount, at least $114,757 is listed as “potential liability arising from debtor’s involvement with Buggs Operations LLC.”

The amounts of several other unsecured claims relating to the development are listed as “undetermined.”
 

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  • BULLDOG?
    Sobro bro: To say he swiped the Bulldog is inaccurate... He legally swindled the property from a widow and fired all of her employees, most of which had been employed by her late husband Moe. It's sickly ironic Moe's name sits on a building Chuck runs, after what he did to Mary Jane and the Bulldog name. He's a slick operator, so I'm surprised this happened, but I think he deserves a little payback from the '90s.
  • Meridian Asset Development
    Meridian Asset Development.... That is John Bales' company.... (you know Mitch Daniels buddy and Carl Brizzi's buddy that hooked him up with the $2.2 million Elkhart State Lease... So does that mean the Venture Companies are in trouble too?
  • bulldog?
    um, M&J's didnt 'open' in 1996 - it had been the Bulldog for years until it was renamed - after being swiped from the previous owners.

    i was unaware of the development of Buggs was connected, but now that i think back to the quality of the food and pricing it totally makes sense.

    GREAT OUTDOOR SEATING COMES AT A PRICE!
  • Uh oh!
    Moe & Johnny's is in the business news today.
    George gill

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  1. PJ - Mall operators like Simon, and most developers/ land owners, establish individual legal entities for each property to avoid having a problem location sink the ship, or simply structure the note to exclude anything but the property acting as collateral. Usually both. The big banks that lend are big boys that know the risks and aren't mad at Simon for forking over the deed and walking away.

  2. Do any of the East side residence think that Macy, JC Penny's and the other national tenants would have letft the mall if they were making money?? I have read several post about how Simon neglected the property but it sounds like the Eastsiders stopped shopping at the mall even when it was full with all of the national retailers that you want to come back to the mall. I used to work at the Dick's at Washington Square and I know for a fact it's the worst performing Dick's in the Indianapolis market. You better start shopping there before it closes also.

  3. How can any company that has the cash and other assets be allowed to simply foreclose and not pay the debt? Simon, pay the debt and sell the property yourself. Don't just stiff the bank with the loan and require them to find a buyer.

  4. If you only knew....

  5. The proposal is structured in such a way that a private company (who has competitors in the marketplace) has struck a deal to get "financing" through utility ratepayers via IPL. Competitors to BlueIndy are at disadvantage now. The story isn't "how green can we be" but how creative "financing" through captive ratepayers benefits a company whose proposal should sink or float in the competitive marketplace without customer funding. If it was a great idea there would be financing available. IBJ needs to be doing a story on the utility ratemaking piece of this (which is pretty complicated) but instead it suggests that folks are whining about paying for being green.

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