Nando's, the mid-spend chicken brand, is embarking on a £4m expansion drive in the London area, with plans to open 15 restaurants over the next two years.
The company, which relaunched in the UK last year with restaurants in Camden, Kingston upon Thames and Putney, will open its sixth restaurant in Shepherd's Bush in December.
Four more restaurants will open early next year in Clapham, Battersea, West Hampstead and St Albans.
The company will then concentrate on opening further outlets in South-west London, north London and central London, in order to maximise the impact of its marketing campaigns in each neighbourhood.
"Nando's straddles both fast food and traditional restaurants, so we need to educate our customers," said managing director Robert Enthoven.
Nando's restaurants are designed to serve a one-mile catchment area and cost between £160,000 and £200,000 to fit out. Units are typically 2,500sq ft and have 80 seats.
Unlike the outlets operated in South Africa by the firm's parent company, which are primarily take-aways, Nando's British restaurants compete directly with the pub/restaurant sector for sites and customers.
Take-home food makes up 40% of sales and the average spend is £6 per head.
The company is to recruit 30 trainee store managers for the expansion drive and a further 150 staff will be taken on during the opening programme.
All new restaurants will be company-owned. However, store managers can become partners in the company through its numerous incentive schemes.
Nando's aims to open up to 40 restaurants by 2000 and will begin looking in towns such as Birmingham, Oxford, Guildford and Brighton in 1998.
"We aim to float on the London Stock Exchange by 2002," said Mr Enthoven.
Meanwhile, Nando's in South Africa is due to be listed on the Johannesburg stock exchange in December 1996 or January 1997.