Boparan Ventures Named As Buyer Of Tesco’s Giraffe Restaurant Chain

Ranjit Boparan, the founder of 2 Sisters Food, has reportedly agreed a deal to acquire Tesco’s Giraffe restaurant chain.

According to Sky News, the tycoon’s private investment vehicle Boparan Ventures will acquire the business for a “modest sum”. Boparan Ventures currently owns the restaurant chains Harry Ramsden’s and Fishworks.

The report said Tesco will announce the disposal this week alongside the sale of its loss-making Kipa chain in Turkey to Migros, another Turkish-owned retailer.

Acquired three years ago under the reign of its former CEO Philip Clarke, Tesco had hoped to use the Giraffe restaurant business to lure shoppers to its larger out-of-town stores. However, losses at the 60 outlets have continued to grow and last year it posted a £4.1m loss on the back of new openings and a write-down on the value of some existing sites.

Chief Executive Dave Lewis has been seeking to cut debt and shed its loss-making businesses to focus on turning around performance of its core grocery business. He is reportedly also looking for buyers for coffee chain Harris + Hoole and Dobbies, its garden centres business.

NAM Implications:
  • Not yet clear if the Giraffe Restaurants will remain in situ, paying a combination of rent and percentage of sales to Tesco.
  • …thus giving a use of ‘spare’ space, a revenue stream, and some traffic…
  • …without the burden of having to make an acceptable profit
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