Urban Dining set to sell

01 December 2005
Urban Dining set to sell

Urban Dining looks set to put its Tootsies restaurant chain up for sale in the New Year after its chief executive, John Metcalf, quit in a boardroom shake-up.

Despite opening six new Tootsies in September and October, the company announced last week that recent trading had not been good.

This, coupled with a sharp fall in Urban's share price since its market debut in May 2004, has led to a review of the 30-strong Tootsies business and the abandonment of its consolidation strategy.

Finance director Tim Woodcock was disappointed the strategy had not worked. "Tootsies remains a good cash-generative brand that should make an attractive purchase for a trade or financial buyer," he said.

Broker Oriel Securities welcomed Urban's decision to cut its losses and quit the "dog-eat-dog casual dining market".

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