San Carlo growth prompts plans for more London openings

02 July 2015 by
San Carlo growth prompts plans for more London openings

San Carlo restaurant group is eyeing another two openings in London next year as well as several international franchise operations, as it posted a rise in turnover of over 12% in 2014.

The company saw its turnover swell by 12.5% to nearly £46.2m for the year to 30 September 2014.

Pre-tax profit was also up by just over 4% to nearly £2.1m.

Investment in new restaurants contributed to the growth, with the launch of San Carlo Fiorentina in Cheshire, San Carlo Bottega in Selfridges in Manchester, and San Carlo Farmacia Del Dolce in Selfridges Manchester during the 12 months covered by the accounts.

Since the end of the period, Cicchetti restaurant in London's Covent Garden and a new Fumo in Manchester also opened, during the final three months of 2014.

The opening of those sites is expected to push group turnover to £55m for the current financial year to 30 September 2015.

The business is also on the point of opening a new Fumo restaurant St Peter's Square in Manchester.

Speaking about the past year to The Caterer, managing director Marcello Distefano said: "Obviously these results are well in the past now but overall it was a good year for us.

"We are looking to open in London next year under the Cicchetti or Fumo brands, so we are looking for new sites for those in London, and we are also looking at other areas of the country as well. It is all about whether or not a good enough site comes up."

Meanwhile, the group has been refocusing its franchising this year. It will open a new Cicchetti in Qatar in the fourth quarter of 2015, and in Bahrain by the middle of 2016. The business is also in talks over further franchise operations in Istanbul and China.

"Cicchetti has become really popular and is going well for us. We have had really positive feedback from our international landlords," Distefano added.

San Carlo, which was founded by chairman Carlo Distefano in 1992, currently has 17 UK restaurants under a variety of brands including San Carlo, Cicchetti, and Fumo. It also operates Signor Sassi in Knightsbridge, Flying Pizza in Leeds, and Le Petit Rouge in Leicester. The group also has an international portfolio with Cicchetti, Bangkok and Signor Sassi, Kuwait.

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