• Juanita Schwartzkopf

What is the Restaurant Revitalization Fund?


Restaurant Revitalization Fund - Focus Management Group

The Restaurant Revitalization Fund (“RRF”) is set to begin its application process shortly. The Restaurant Revitalization Fund is a $28.6 billion resource for liquidity for restaurants. Funds received under the RRF are grants, and do not require repayment. The Restaurant Revitalization Fund program is administered directly by the SBA.


To be eligible for the funding, the applicant must operate twenty or fewer restaurants, and must be privately owned. Privately owned franchisees of publicly traded franchisors are eligible. The Restaurant Revitalization Fund defines entities who are eligible for this funding as:

  • Restaurants.

  • Food stands, food trucks, and food carts.

  • Caterers.

  • Bars, saloons, lounges, and taverns.

  • Snack and nonalcoholic beverage bars.

  • Bakeries, brewpubs, tasting rooms, taprooms, breweries, microbreweries, wineries, and distilleries at which on-site sales to the public comprise at least 33% of the gross receipts.

  • Inns at which on-site sales of food and beverages to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts.

  • Licensed facilities or premises of a beverage alcohol producer where the public may taste, sample, or purchase products.

The amount an entity is eligible for is capped at $5 million per location, and $10 million in total, and is tied to the amount of revenue lost from 2019 to 2020.


Read more: FMG Industry Analysis: The Dichotomy of Restaurant Performance During a Pandemic


During the first 21 days of the application period the Restaurant Revitalization Fund will prioritize applications from entities owned by women, veterans, and socially and economically disadvantaged individuals.


Click below for the SBA Restaurant Revitalization Fund Application.

SBA Restaurant Revitalization Fund Appli
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Download • 405KB

This link above will take you to a PDF of the draft application. Applicants are not limited to entities in operation prior to or on January 1, 2019. Entities that began operations partially through 2019 are also eligible, and have a specific calculation methodology. Entities that began operations between January 1, 2020 and March 10, 2021 are also eligible, and entities that have not yet opened but incurred eligible expenses as of March 11, 2021 are eligible.


The math to be used for calculating eligible Restaurant Revitalization Fund amounts is different for each of the three categories: 1) entities in operation as of January 1, 2019, 2) entities that began operations in 2020 or early 2021, and 3) entities that have not opened but incurred eligible expenses.


Here is a sample calculation methodology for the first category noted – a restaurant in operation on January 1, 2019.

Restaurant Revitalization Fund - Focus Management Group

In the first example, a single location restaurant that experienced a drop in revenues and received a PPP loan is eligible for $900,000 of RRF grant funds.

Now let’s look at a multi-location restaurant operator that experienced a dramatic decrease in revenues and did receive a PPP loan. Using four locations and a decrease in revenues from $20 million to $7 million, the RRF grant would be limited to the program cap of $10 million.

Restaurant Revitalization Fund - Focus Management Group

In the third example, a small single location operator is eligible for $50,000 of RRF funds even though the closings in that state were shorter and the operator was able to take advantage of curbside pickup and meal delivery services.

Restaurant Revitalization Fund - Focus Management Group

Once the RFF funding amount has been calculated, the applicant applies for the grant directly with the SBA and then will be required to report use of the funds for eligible expenses.


The eligible expenses include:

  • Payroll.

  • Principal or interest on mortgage obligations.

  • Rent.

  • Utilities.

  • Maintenance, including construction to accommodate outdoor seating.

  • Supplies such as PPE and cleaning products.

  • Food and beverage inventory.

  • Certain supplier costs.

  • Paid sick leave.

  • Operational expenses.

  • Any other expenses the SBA determines is essential to maintaining the operations.


The funds must be used for eligible expenses between February 15, 2020 and December 31, 2021.


What should a lender or operator do now?


While the SBA is finalizing the application document and the portal for submitting applications is being readied, both the lender and operator should assemble the information needed to complete the draft application.


Click to read more about Focus Management Group's Industry Analysis for Restaurants