Cubana launches £200k crowdfunding drive

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

Phillip Oppenheim MP Cubana crowdfunding restaurants
Cubana, the restaurant group founded by former Conservative treasury minister Phillip Oppenheim, has launched a crowdfunding drive to expand.

The Latin American group is hoping to raise a £200,000 loan on Crowd2Fund at 10% APR to grow from its two London sites in to a ‘small chain’.

Cubana originally raised over £100,000 on the platform in July but says it has begun a second round of funding due to the ‘unprecedented’ response.

Oppenheim was MP for Amber Valley from 1983-97 under Margaret Thatcher and John Major, before launching Cubana in Waterloo in 1998. A second site opened in Smithfields in 2015.

He says he plans to steadily increase the number of sites over the long-term to create a ‘small chain’ of sites within five years, using only free-range produce.

“I would not want to be involved in a large corporate chain which prepares all of its food in large factories,” says Oppenheim.

“A lot of once good places have retracted from their sustainability roots. The day someone says to me that we can save £1 a portion by not going for free range chicken is the day we have grown too large.”

Cubana’s free-range menu includes street food-inspired dishes such as Pollo Criollo (chicken casseroled in orange juice, sherry, onions and garlic); and a hot Cuban sandwich with ham, swiss cheese, pork and mustard.

Writing on its earlier crowdfunding page the group said it had turned online to raise funds after finding banks were ‘very cautious about new lending’ following the Brexit vote.

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