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Strong increases in turnover and profit for Wagamama

18 July 2016 by
Strong increases in turnover and profit for Wagamama

Casual dining chain Wagamama has seen a 19% increase in turnover in its 2016 annual results, as it continues to upgrade its restaurant estate.

In accounts for the 52 weeks to 24 April 2016, the Pan-Asian restaurant business reported an increase in turnover to £228.1m (up from £191.7m in the year before).

Adjusted earnings before interest taxation depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) grew by 28% to £228.1m, compared with £191.7m in 2015.

Wagamama has been upgrading its estate under what it calls the Kaizen project, which seeks continuous improvement in all aspects of operations, including in its new and refurbished restaurants.

The firm is also continuing to expand internationally, with a focus on its US-owned estate and new European franchise markets.

Currently the group operates 158 restaurants in 18 countries. Its US-owned estate includes sites in Boston and New York City, and it has secured a second lease in the East Village in New York City.

UK like-for-like sales grew by 13.1% during the year, while US like-for-likes rose by 11.3%.

David Campbell, CEO of Wagamama, said: "I'm delighted to report these fantastic results, which reflects the hard work delivered by the team throughout the past year to ensure our brand, UK estate upgrade, and continued international expansion is a great success."

"Having established a strong UK brand, which has now outperformed the UK restaurant market for 112 consecutive weeks, we are excited to be moving further down a path to create an iconic international restaurant brand. The US is a significant opportunity for us and we have already initiated our growth strategy with the acquisition of two leases in New York. We have also further bolstered our European footprint by adding new European franchise markets.

"We have great people throughout the business and a talented executive team in place to continue to make this business a success. We are confident that with our market leading position, well invested portfolio and stable and resilient business model we are well positioned for future growth."

Wagamama is one of the UK's original Japanese-inspired restaurant groups, having launched its first restaurant in Bloomsbury in 1992 under founder Alan Yau.

In 1997 the group was bought out by Ian Neill and Graphite Capital who helped to steer the brand's meteoric growth.

It was sold for £102.5m to private equity firm Lion Capital in 2005, which in turn sold it in 2011 to Duke Street Capital.

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