Casual Dining Group acquires Las Iguanas

Claire Dodd

Claire Dodd

07 July 2015

Las Iguanas, the 41-strong Latin American restaurant and bar chain, has been purchased by the Casual Dining Group (CDG), from mid-market private equity firm Bowmark Capital.

The acquisition takes CDG’s estate to 250 sites, including restaurants operating under the Bella Italia and Café Rouge brands.

CDG, which aims to be the UK’s leading independent casual dining business, has also said it plans to open 30 further new sites over the next 10 months. Mos Shamel, the CEO of Las Iguanas, will join the CDG board and will continue to lead and develop Las Iguanas.

Steve Richards, CEO of CDG, said: 'Las Iguanas is a proven, high-quality restaurant business that has been carefully developed over 25 years. It is clearly differentiated and is positioned for significant further growth. It fits perfectly with our strategy to create a scalable restaurant group comprising compelling brands, with broad appeal, which deliver industry-leading consumer and financial metrics.'

The Latin-American chain, which also has a strong focus on cocktails, has sites located from Aberdeen to Plymouth, and trades predominantly on the high street, with some leisure parks and retail locations.

Previously named the Tragus Group, CDG has transformed itself in recent years, with a new management team, refinancing and an extensive site refurbishment programme. It was taken over in April 2014, by a consortium of new investors, including funds managed by affiliates of Apollo Global Management (LLC) and York Capital.

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