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Mon 6th Jul 2020 - Majority of Vapiano’s UK estate acquired out of administration
Majority of Vapiano’s UK estate acquired out of administration: The majority of Italian casual dining brand Vapiano UK has been acquired out of administration in two separate deals, Propel has learned. Allan Graham and Matthew Ingram, of Duff & Phelps, were appointed as administrators to the business last month following an initial sales process carried out by PwC. Subsequently the administrators concluded two transactions. The first was the sale of three London restaurants – in Great Portland Street, Bankside and Tower Bridge – to UK VAP, a subsidiary of Love & Food Restaurant Holdings, which recently acquired the Vapiano brand and franchising rights from Vapiano SE. The second deal saw a site in Manchester sold to Minhoco 56, a subsidiary of Cairn Hotels Group, which is operated by the Handa family. The transactions secure the future of 209 jobs. UK country director Craig Goslin and the Vapiano UK management team will remain in place to support the corporate restaurants and franchise network and drive growth in the UK. Goslin said: “At the core of the Vapiano UK business is the incredible group of dedicated and passionate people that make up our management and restaurant teams. While sadly not all of our people will be continuing the journey with us, I am grateful, particularly during these unprecedented times, we’ve been able to secure the future of Vapiano UK and many of our people. I look forward to leading the team on the exciting next chapter of the Vapiano UK story while delivering shareholder value for our investors and franchise partners.” The appointment and subsequent sale of four of the seven Vapiano sites was concluded as a result of a pre-pack administration that took place today (Monday, 6 July). The deals will see the closure of the brand’s sites in Soho, Centre Point and Edinburgh. Love & Food was established as a purchasing vehicle for a consortium of investors led by a former shareholder and director Mario C Bauer. Under the terms of the agreement, Minhoco 56 will enter a franchise agreement with Love & Food to operate the Manchester site and is looking to open further sites in the UK. The announcement follows the sale of Vapiano SE and its subsidiaries in Germany to a consortium led by Bauer, which took over the business in a mixed asset/share deal for a total purchase price of €15m (£13.5m). The transaction included 30 restaurants operated by Vapiano in Germany. Graham said: “We are delighted we have been able to secure the future of this high-street favourite in what are the most extraordinary times for the leisure and hospitality sector. The collapse into administration of the parent company in Germany put the spotlight on the UK operation but its sale to an investors group has enabled us to rescue the majority of the UK-based sites in what has been a great outcome for the company, its employees and the high street.” Harper Dennis Hobbs acted on the UK transactions.

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