Wagamama halts expansion

Wagamama, the canteen-style noodle bar chain, has said that it has temporarily halted its expansion plans, but is set to resume openings in the spring after a robust financial performance. The Japanese restaurant chain, which has 65 restaurants, said operating profits jumped 75 per cent to £7.1m for the year to April 2009 on sales of £101m. But after interest payments, the group owned by private equity firm Lion Capital recorded an overall pre-tax loss of £7.1m, down from £9.8m.