By Adriano Marchese

FAT Brands said Tuesday that its founder and chairman, Andrew Wiederhorn, as well as one current and one former officer of the company each received a Wells Notice from the Securities and Exchange Commission.

A Wells Notice is a communication from the U.S. securities regulator that informs people under investigation that a conclusion has been reached regarding proceedings against them. It is neither a formal charge of wrongdoing nor a determination that the recipient has violated any law, but FAT Brands said it believes that all conduct related to the investigation and the Wells Notices occurred during or prior to fiscal year 2020.

In April, the company, which franchises various restaurants like Fatburger and Johnny Rockets, overhauled its board in April, removing most of its independent directors and dissolving some committees while the government investigated the company.

FAT Brands previously disclosed that the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Central District of California and the Securities Exchange Commission were investigating the company and Andrew Wiederhorn. FAT Brands' board had formed a Special Review Committee comprised of directors other than Andrew Wiederhorn to oversee a review of the issues raised by the investigations.

"The company is continuing to cooperate with the SEC and maintains that its actions were appropriate, and intends to pursue the Wells Notice process, including submitting a formal response to the SEC," it said Tuesday in filings to the SEC.

Write to Adriano Marchese at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

02-20-24 0730ET