Ramsay explores sale of stake in restaurant business

By Mark Wingett

- Last updated on GMT

Gordon Ramsay's restaurant estate includes Heddon Street Kitchen, due to open this month
Gordon Ramsay's restaurant estate includes Heddon Street Kitchen, due to open this month

Related tags: Gordon ramsay, Gordon ramsay group

High-profile chef Gordon Ramsay is lining up a sale of a 50 per cent stake in his restaurant business, which could value it at up to £80m, according to the Sunday Times.

The newspaper says that Gordon Ramsay Group (GRG) is working with advisers at BDO to find an investor willing to help fund the expansion of the business, which operates over 20 restaurants around the world.

Kavalake, the holding company for the chef’s restaurants, delivered earnings before interest, tax and other charges of £5m for the year to August 2013, with sales climbing 4 per cent to £44.8m.

At the same time, BigHospitality's sister publication M&C Report understands that the company has hired Simon Rowe, former group financial officer at Paramount Restaurants, as interim finance director. Rowe, who has also had stints at Be At One, Hakkasan and Company of Cooks, was until recently interim finance director at 5 Hertford Street, Robin Birley’s private members’ club.

In 2009, Ramsay admitted that the business came close to being placed into administration, until he injected further funds into it and closed a number of under-performing sites overseas.

Earlier this year, GRG managing director Stuart Gillies said there was no reason why “we can’t do 50 new restaurants over the next five years”.

The company is planning openings in Singapore and Macau as well as more openings in the US. It recently opened its first site in Asia, with the launch of Bread Street Kitchen in Hong Kong.

It is currently gearing up to open Heddon Street Kitchen in Regent’s Street Food Quarter, which is scheduled to launch next week.

The company is also set to reopen the former Aubergine restaurant in Chelsea where Ramsay held his first head chef position under the name Park Walk.

Ramsay will open his next international venture, Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill at Caesars Atlantic City early next year.

The restaurant sector is gearing up for 12 months of M&A activity, with a number of high-profile businesses currently exploring options or due to come on to the market.

This article was published first in M&C Report​. To subscribe contact Emily.croft@wrbm.com​ or call 01293 846578

Related topics: Business, People, Restaurants

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