Nando's takes flight by offloading GBK to South African restaurant chain

Oliver Gill
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Wimpy operates out of 86 locations in the UK, most of which are based in and around London (Source: Getty)

One of the original purveyors of the upmarket burger has been sold to the owner of 1980s stalwart Wimpy for 2.1bn rand (£109m).

In a deal that really cut the mustard South African fast food group Famous Brands bought Britain's Gourmet Burger Kitchen (GBK) as it saved nearly a fifth on the price due to the weaker pound in the wake of the Brexit vote.

"Brexit has had some upside for us," said Famous Brands adviser Kevin Hedderwick.

He confirmed that Famous Brands had saved a meaty 700m rand since negotiations were started earlier in 2016 as the South African currency had stablised in the wake of comparatively peaceful local elections.

Read more: The rise of the posh burger

GBK was bought by private equity house Capricorn Ventures – which owns high street favourite Nando's – from Clapham House for £30m in 2010.

The South African group said it plans to double the burger chain's 75 British stores in the next five years at a rate of 10-15 new restaurants per year. It plans to expand further in Ireland and open outlets in South Africa.

Hedderwick was quick to beef up the prospects for the burger chain. "The fast-casual premium environment is pretty recession proof," he said.

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