Restaurants

Various Eateries announces intention to float

Restaurant Group Various Eateries has revealed its intention to launch a public offering on the London Stock Exchange seeking to raise around £25m.

The group operates two restaurant brands across ten locations – Coppa Club, an all-day clubhouse offer in prime locations throughout London and the South-East and Tavolino, a new Italian brand with “nationwide potential”.

The group also operates two Strada sites which, subject to matters including market conditions, it aims to re-fit as Tavolino sites.

The group was founded by former Pizza Express boss Hugh Osmond who led the acquisition and transformation of Pizza Express from annual losses in 1993, to £38m of EBITDA by 2001.

He has also since gone on to establish Punch Taverns and became the executive chairman of Punch Group. He led the process of consolidation in the pub industry to create a group with over 8,000 outlets, and an enterprise value of £3.5bn in 2005.

Osmond said: “I believe that Covid-19 is the biggest event to hit the UK economy outside of war-time. Whilst I deplore the terrible effect it has had on our industry, we are confident that there will be major opportunities for a well funded group with strong management to build a fantastic business in the aftermath of Covid.

“We are also confident that we have one of the most experienced teams ever assembled in the hospitality sector, 2020s-appropriate brands, and an established platform business and I am firmly of the view that the opportunity is as big as it was in the early 1990s when I jointly led the acquisition of PizzaExpress.”

He added: “The funds raised will be principally used to take advantage of the opportunities and accelerate growth. Our senior team has an established track record of acquiring, converting and opening sites and, with, what we perceive to be, the availability of premium sites at attractive rents, I believe the prospects for Coppa Club and Tavolino are exciting.

“There are also a number of well-known brands out there that are struggling to navigate the pandemic and various other industry pressures. Should the right opportunities present themselves, we would consider supplementing our organic growth through acquisition, offering distressed brands a more sustainable future as part of the g roup.”

The company said admission to AIM is expected to take place by the end of September/early October 2020.

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