Whitbread completes Pizza Hut disposal

12 September 2006
Whitbread completes Pizza Hut disposal

Whitbread has completed its disposal of its 50% stake in Pizza Hut UK to American group Yum! Restaurants for £112m.

Yum! is the American owner of Pizza Hut but was a 50/50 franchise partner with Whitbread at the group's 600 UK sites.

The deal is believed to have been on the table for some time and was first reported in Catererover a year ago.

Whitbread chief executive Alan Parker said in July: "Our exit from this joint venture is further evidence of the continuing progress we are making towards becoming a leaner and more focused group."

Last July, a Caterer source said a buyout was on the cards and pointed to the fact that Yum! had done similar deals in other countries as part of a strategy of buying out franchise partners.

The source added the relationship between Whitbread and Yum! had run its course.

"The original reason for the joint venture was that Whitbread was growing restaurant brands and its experience of the UK market was useful to Yum! That's no longer the case," they said.

Whitbread sells Pizza Hut stake to partner Yum! Restaurants >>

Mitchells & Butlers pays £500m for Whitbread's pub restaurant estate >>

By Chris Druce

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