Wimpy’s owner buys gourmet burger firm

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THE South African owner of Wimpy has bought British burger chain Gourmet Burger Kitchen for £120m.

GBK has 75 restaurants across the UK, including one in Chichester.

Famous Brands said its acquisition of the group was the ‘biggest’ it had ever concluded. In a statement, it said: ‘The low-interest environment in the UK is supportive of continued consumer spend, while the impact of fears of Brexit on this sector appear negligible – endorsed by a recent survey which confirms that despite the generally subdued economy, household spend in the eating out category is up four per cent year on year in June 2016.’

GBK had been owned by private equity Nando’s owner Capricorn Ventures.

Kevin Hedderwick, Famous Brands’ strategic adviser, said the group will continue to expand in the UK, opening 10-15 restaurants a year.

He said: ‘GBK has substantial store growth potential in the UK, with a secure, current pipeline of sites in place.’