INDIANAPOLIS - Indianapolis-based Scotty's Brewhouse has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The company says the decision was "driven largely by the challenges of some specific locations and was necessary because of the way the company was structured corporately." As a result of the deal, Scotty's will close four of its restaurants by the end of the year.

The affected locations are reported to be in Muncie, downtown Indianapolis, Carmel, and Waco, Texas.

In a news release provided to Inside INdiana Business, Scotty's Brewhouse Brand President Chris Martin said, "The process we have initiated today will allow us the opportunity to emerge stronger and better position the Company for growth. We will close locations that are not profitable by the end of this year. Additionally, the company moving forward will focus its efforts on growing the brand through franchising as well as management agreements. These actions will allow us to provide better service to our guests and strategically expand with new locations in the future.”

The company says the filing will provide the tools and time to strengthen its balance sheet, close underperforming restaurants, revisit certain agreements and "reposition the company for long-term success."

Two years ago, Scotty's Brewhouse was acquired by a subsidiary of Arizona-based Due North Holdings LLC. At the time, founder Scott Wise said the company was looking to expand to 100 locations in five years. In June, Scotty's announced the launch of a national franchise program.

Wise released the following statement to Inside INdiana Business:

I learned of the Scotty's and Thr3e Wise Men bankruptcy filing today at the same time as the public.  Although I have been separated from the company for over a year and haven't been involved in any Scotty's management in over 2 years, I can't say my heart and soul ever left after building a company into 18 locations in 4 states over 20 years.  Not only did I spend half my life and my entire career at Scotty's; but, I worked with some of the best people I could ever imagined.  We grew a community-centric, philanthropic focused brand that was more than just food and drink - it was a feeling of warmth and smiles and generosity that I will never forget.  I'm mostly saddened by the news as it is affecting many employees right before the holidays.  I am hopeful that the Chapter 11 reorganization gives the new owners the opportunity to go back and correct all the reasons that led to this situation.  And, I am hopeful that they can come out of this situation as a stronger, better and more profitable company in the future.

Wise opened the first Scotty's location in Muncie in 1996.