Nando's owner Capricorn Ventures has bought Gourmet Burger Kitchen (GBK) operator Clapham House in a £30m deal.
The cash deal, equivalent to 74p for each Clapham House share, values the company at £30.4m, a 31% premium to the restaurant operator's share price before the approach.
Capricorn said it would now provide the "significant investment and time" needed to re-invigorate Clapham House's brands, which also include the Real Greek, in the current "difficult" trading environment for restaurants.
At the start of the month Clapham House warned of the lasting volatility in the eating out market, which despite a recent upturn looks set to continue as consumers worry about job security. October's increase in the National Minimum Wage and January's VAT rise are also set to erode restaurateurs' margins further.
Despite raising £2.2m in a share-placing in May to open further GBK sites, the directors of the company admitted that securing further essential funding as a listed company beyond this would likely remain very difficult for the foreseeable future. Against this backdrop they have opted to accept Capricorn's offer.
Nando's has 234 restaurants and 6,500 employees in the UK & Ireland and takes on 53 GBK restaurants (14 operating internationally) and six Real Greeks as part of the deal.
By Neil Gerrard
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