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Wed 25th Nov 2015 - Wagamama to open flagship New York site
Wagamama to open flagship New York site: Wagamama is to debut in New York with a location at 210 Fifth Avenue, scheduled to open next autumn. The 7,000-square-foot, three-level space will serve as the United States flagship for the company, which has 140 locations. The building it will occupy is a 1903-vintage building with bay windows overlooking Madison Square Park. The asking rent was $800,000, or a blended $114 per square foot for the three-level space, including 3,200 square feet on the ground floor. “The ownership was looking for the right operator, not the last dollar,” a spokesman for the landlord said. The space had been previously let to Dewey’s Flatiron, a bar that closed in early 2014. Wagamama’s site is around the corner from the recently opened Porcelanosa design showroom and store in the former Commodore Criterion building and across the park from the Edition Hotel. Wagamama has four locations in Boston, Massachusetts. In July, Wagamama reported underlying Ebitda up 19.8%, resulting in an adjusted Ebitda of £30.3m for the brand for the 52 weeks, ending 26 April 2015. The results saw a 10% sales growth on a like-for-like basis. Turnover increased by 17.9% to £193.3m in comparison with £164.0m in the 2014 financial year. The company stated: “The group has now been trading ahead of competition for 60 consecutive weeks and is well placed for continued growth both in the UK and internationally. The results are released amidst the rollout of an extensive UK-wide expansion and refresh plan, which will see circa 45 new restaurants and 50 refurbishments take place across the UK in the next three years. Currently the group operates 150 sites in 15 countries worldwide. Alongside UK plans, international franchise openings are being rolled out across Europe and the Middle East.”

Bill’s opening milestone 70th site: Bill’s Restaurants will continue its rapid expansion in the UK, with two sites opening on Monday (30 November). Bishop’s Stortford will officially be the 70th site, opening at 8am, swiftly followed by a second Manchester site in the Trafford Centre opening on the same day at 9am. Bill’s is also opening its 72nd site in the Birmingham Bullring on Monday, 7 December at 8am. The new restaurants join a current portfolio of 69 Bill’s restaurants across the UK. The most recent openings include Muswell Hill in London, Gloucester Quays, Taunton, Sheffield, Colchester, Witney and Leeds. Bill’s currently employs 2,880 staff, which is due to rise to nearly 3,000 with the three new openings, serving an average of 145,600 people a week across the UK.
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