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Mon 16th Apr 2018 - Punch appoints Clive Chesser as chief executive, new operator for Jamie Oliver's Australia business
Punch appoints Clive Chesser as new chief executive: Punch has appointed Clive Chesser as its new chief executive. Chesser will join Punch on Monday, 4 June and brings more than 25 years of industry experience, having run Greene King’s tenanted, leased and franchised pub business and its Brewing & Brands business. Prior to joining Greene King, Chesser held senior positions at Ei Group and at Haagan Dazs, having started his career with SSP where he worked his way up from a graduate trainee to operations manager for its London bars division. Stephen Green, senior partner of Patron Capital and director of Punch, said: “We are extremely pleased to have attracted not only the best candidate in the market place, but one that I’m confident will provide excellent leadership as we move through this next exciting phase for Punch as a privately owned, independent business, committed to investing heavily in our pubs, our publicans and our people. I know Clive is very much looking forward to joining the Punch team and relishing the opportunities ahead. Clive has the full support of the Punch executive board and wider team and we look forward to welcoming him to our business. I would also like to thank chief financial officer Steve Dando for his interim leadership of Punch.”

Jamie’s Italian closes Canberra site as new company takes over Australian franchises: Jamie Oliver has closed his Jamie’s Italian site in Canberra, Australia, without warning. The restaurant failed to open on Monday (16 April) after a busy weekend of trade. In a statement, the Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group confirmed the closure “with immediate effect” and announced Brisbane-based Hallmark Group would take over operating the Australian franchises of the chain, with Jamie’s Italian restaurants in Sydney, Brisbane, Perth, Parramatta and Adelaide to remain open. A sign on the Canberra restaurant door read: “It is with great sadness that Jamie’s Italian Canberra has had to close its doors indefinitely.” Managers were informed of the closure early on Monday morning and staff were told to collect any personal items before the locks were changed on the doors before midday. The restaurant opened in 2013 and was the third Jamie’s Italian restaurant in Australia. Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group Australia chief operating officer Ben Shaughnessy told the Canberra Times: “After a short period of in-house management, we are pleased to be partnering with Hallmark. The team brings a huge amount of experience and passion for our brand, from collaborating with the key suppliers to our food philosophy, and we look forward to working with them as they develop the Jamie’s Italian restaurant offering across Australia.” A Hallmark spokesman added: “Hallmark is actively seeking new suitable locations for the next Jamie’s Italian.” The Australian restaurants were co-owned and operated by Keystone Group until June 2016, when the company was put into receivership. In November that year, Oliver stepped in to salvage the restaurants, buying all six Australian Jamie’s Italians.

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