Gourmet Restaurants Group, owner of Indian restaurant chain Tiffinbites, plans to "rapidly expand across the country" after acquiring the Bombay Bicycle Club (BBC) from Clapham House Group.
Backed by India's ICICI Bank, Jamal Hirani, acquired BBC's three London restaurants and 15 delivery kitchens yesterday in a deal worth £4.4m.
Hirani told Caterersearch he saw huge potential in BBC's takeaway operation, which he plans to expand throughout Britain over the next year.
"We have earmarked 50 sites in city locations across the country and it's just a matter of taking the existing format and rolling it out," he said.
Hirani added that despite the current economic climate the takeaway market remained in a strong position. "While consumers may not go out for dinner as much, they will still order take away meals.
"Food inflation is of concern but we are a big business now with huge buying power, which puts us in a position where we can dictate good value," he said.
BBC made a pre-tax loss of £484,000 for the year ending 30 March and has net assets worth £2.4m.
Clapham House will use the cash from the sale of the business to reduce its debt and invest in its Gourmet Burger Kitchen, Real Greek and Tootsies brands.
Henry Harris, partner at property consultant Edward Symmons who acted on behalf of Gourmet Restaurants, said: "The BBC deal shows that, despite the escalating costs of food and utilities, appetite remains for good quality businesses that offer potential for roll out and efficiency gains."
By Kerstin Kühn
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