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RCapital puts Little Chef up for sale

15 April 2013 by
RCapital puts Little Chef up for sale

Roadside diner chain Little Chef is up for sale again after owner RCapital put it on the market six years after rescuing it from administration.

The turnaround specialists are reported to have appointed KPMG to handle the process.

RCapital took control of Little Chef in 2007 and has since reduced it from 200 sites to 83.

There are already buyers reported to be interested in the restaurant, according to Sky News, which quoted sources claiming that the restaurants in the estate, most of which have large car parks, would appeal to coffee chains and convenience stores.

In a statement, RCapital said: "Over the last six years, RCapital has successfully completed an operational turnaround and financial restructuring, which has repositioned the business and brought the group of companies back into profitability.

"The move was part of a long-term critical rebuild strategy to create consistently profitable sites against the backdrop of one of the worst recessions in living memory.

"With the turnaround successfully completed, it's time to explore the next phase for the food service operator."

The first branch of Little Chef, recognised nationwide by its "Fat Charlie" logo, opened in Reading in 1958. It had 230 branches at the peak of its success.

The company has tried a number of measures to boost its popularity in recent years, including appointing celebrity chef Heston Blumenthal to the brand in 2009, and launching a takeaway concept in 11 sites called Little Chef Express in 2012.

Little Chef launches takeaway concept at 11 sites >>
Five Little Chefs to be converted to Starbucks in EuroGarages deal >>
Heston Blumenthal effect raises profit forecasts for Little Chef >>
RCapital completes restructuring of Little Chef and will close 66 restaurants >>
Little Chef set to close 70 restaurants >>

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