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The owner of Frankie & Benny’s and Chiquito is to speed up plans to close restaurants. Restaurant Group said it would close up to 90 of the restaurants and it will temporarily suspend its dividend.

The group has been struggling with falling sales at those restaurants, which have offset stronger performances in Wagamama and its concessions and pubs units.

Shares in Restaurant Group fell more than 6% in early trading. The company said it would reduce the number of restaurants to 260 to 275 by the end of 2021, from 350 currently.

It had initially looked at more than 100 restaurants last year with a view to closing a number of them within six years.

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