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The owner of the Wagamama’s chain of Japanese-style eateries is buying Barburrito, the Mexican dining chain, for £7 million in cash and plans to double the number of outlets in an expansion focused on the south of England.
The Restaurant Group (TRG) said Barburrito, was “well aligned” with current consumer trends for healthy eating and customisable cuisine. TRG also runs the Frankie & Benny’s diners and Chiquito, another Mexican-themed outlet.
Barburrito was founded in Manchester in 2005 operates 16 branches, often in busy locations, many of which are in the north of England, although it has shops in Paddington station and Hammersmith’s Broadway Shopping Centre. It will become part of TRG’s Leisure & Concessions division, which has already run two franchised outlets under the Barburrio brand.
“Barburrito’s strong current trading gives us confidence in its ability to align with and extend TRG’s track record of market outperformance,” the company said. “TRG believes there is significant scope to further develop and expand the brand, particularly in the south of England ... The initial expansion plan would be to double the existing estate over the next four years.”
TRG also said it made an early loan repayment of £44m in June, “given the group’s significant cash headroom and confidence in the underlying cash generation across our businesses.”
Its shares rose 1% to 45p in morning trade in London.