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Morning Briefing for pub, restaurant and food wervice operators

Thu 2nd Oct 2014 - Prezzo confirms £300m private equity approach
Prezzo confirms £300m private equity approach: Restaurant company Prezzo, led by Jonathan Kaye, has confirmed it has received preliminary proposals from private equity companies Advent International and TPG Capital in relation to a possible offer for the company. The company said that “indications are that any offer is unlikely to be at a premium to the share price at the close of business on 1 October 2014 of 135p per Ordinary Share”. The company added: “Following this announcement, the company is now considered to be in an “offer period” as defined in the City Code on Takeovers and Mergers (the “Code”), and the dealing disclosure requirements listed below will apply. In accordance with Rule 2.6(a) of the Code, each of Advent International Plc and TPG Capital LLP must, by not later than 5.00pm on 30 October 2014, either announce a firm intention to make an offer for the Company in accordance with Rule 2.7 of the Code or announce that they do not intend to make an offer.” Prezzo shares have fallen from the near 10% high point of the day, after press reports speculated that the Italian restaurant chain was selling the business for £300m. Although the Prezzo stock price eased off major gains of the day, it was still trading up near 3% at 138.75p as of 2.56pm today. Prezzo operates almost 250 Italian restaurants across the UK and floated on the mid-cap London market in 2002. Its brands are Prezzo, Chimichanga and Cleaver. Last month, the group reported half-year pre-tax profits of £14.6m, up 17% on the same period a year earlier as the improving UK economy boosted the number of visitors to its restaurants. Announcing the results, Michael Carlton, Prezzo’s chairman, said: “Our sales growth in the first quarter of the year was exceptionally strong and while we have continued to deliver good and steady growth in subsequent months, the overall rate of growth has moderated in the second quarter and beyond. Nevertheless, with a strong set of new openings thus far in 2014, we remain confident of delivering a satisfactory outcome for 2014 as a whole.” 
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