Even though the Paycheck Protection Program had limited funds, 71 publicly traded companies nabbed millions in loans before the stimulus was exhausted.
These large firms received more than $300 million in emergency loans, or about .09% of the funds available, according to Forbes. The most highly valued publicly traded company to receive a $10 million loan was Shake Shack, a burger chain with a stock market capitalization of $1.6 billion.
Shake Shack had as many as 7,603 employees at the end of 2019, but has laid off or furloughed 1,000 employees since the beginning of the pandemic. The company was eligible for the stimulus funds because it does not employ more than 500 people at a single location.
On Sunday, the company said it would return the $10 million loan.
Ruth’s Hospitality Group, which operates Ruth’s Chris Steak House, received $20 million from the SBA program via two different subsidiaries. Nashville-based J. Alexander’s Holdings, which owns casual dining restaurants, obtained two separate loans totaling $15.1 million.
Some companies that received loans are based outside the U.S., including Singapore-based Wave Life Sciences and Canada-based CRH Medical. However, both do have significant operations in the U.S.