Veteran London restaurateur Claudio Pulze has agreed to sell his shares in restaurant group A-Z Restaurants to co-shareholder John De Stefano.

Pulze told Caterer he would be selling his shares with effect from 9 February but would remain involved in the company as a non-executive director. "After many offers from my co-shareholder, John De Stefano, I have now decided for both personal and business reasons that the time is right," he said.

A-Z Restaurants comprises the Michelin-starred Aubergine, Zafferano, L'Oranger, two Memories of China, Alloro and Spiga Soho.

Last year Pulze opened his first pub, the Beehive, off London's Baker Street. He also rescued struggling French restaurant W'Sens from administration, and now jointly owns it with French chef twins Laurent and Jacques Pourcel and their partner Olivier Château.

The seven-strong A-Z Restaurants group includes Michelin-starred Aubergine

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