The Utah-based sandwich shop Even Stevens has run into more money woes, as the property owner of its Sugar House location filed court documents Friday to evict the restaurant for allegedly not paying rent.
Brooks Pickering, Even Stevens chief restructuring officer, said the company paid past due rent to the property owners Friday and that the issue had been resolved. He said the restaurant isn’t in danger of closing.
Attorneys for the landlord, DRMH LLC., filed two verified complaints for evictions, alleging leasee and Even Stevens co-founder Steve Down (who is no longer involved with the company) hadn’t paid rent in months.
The property owners posted notices of eviction at the office Dec. 10 and the restaurant on Feb. 12. Both establishments are located at 2030 S. 900 East. The first notice asked for $7,844.75 in past rent and fees. The second said Even Stevens must pay $9,731.72, according to the orders.
If the company didn’t pay or vacate the property within three days, the notice threatened legal action. The property owner followed through on that Friday.
An attorney for the property owner didn’t return The Tribune’s request for comment Friday evening.
Pickering said he couldn’t elaborate on what led up to the restaurant being threatened with eviction — he doesn’t deal with the real estate side of operations — except to say it was a result of “extenuating circumstances that aren’t related to just plain old rent.”
The sandwich shop has been struggling with finances recently, prompting a restructuring effort that closed restaurants in Arizona, Texas and Colorado. The restaurant, which advertised a “buy one sandwich, give one to charity” model, stopped its charitable giving in August 2018 to improve its finances.
While Pickering said at the time that the company would resume donations after 60 days, former employees told The Tribune last month that charitable giving remained suspended. Pickering responded saying the company will revive donations once it becomes profitable. He predicted that would happen in the second quarter of 2019, which begins in April.
The company’s money problems have been attributed to its fast expansion. Company co-founder Down has also faced legal trouble.
He was accused in a May 2018 lawsuit filed by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission of making misrepresentations by building and operations event centers in five states by using high-interest loans from private investigators.
He resolved the lawsuit by paying a $150,000 fine and did not admit to or deny the allegations.