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Tragus Group renamed Casual Dining Group

Casual Dining Group

Casual Dining Group is the new name for the group behind household restaurant brands Bella Italia and Café Rouge. Unveiled today, the new company name reflects the transformation from what was Tragus Group to a focused, highly capitalised and growing restaurant business.

The announcement of Casual Dining Group’s new identity coincides with the posting of the last set of full-year accounts for what was Tragus Group, for the period to 1 June 2014.

Highlights include:

  •  New senior leadership team in place
  • Business refinanced; debt reduced from £258m to £91m
  • EBITDA of £33.3m; group now highly cash generative
  • Casual Dining Group in rapid growth phase; on track to open 70 new restaurants
  • 3,100 new UK jobs to be created over the next three years
  • Brand evolution programme underway; 160 existing restaurants to be refurbished
  • Sales growth trend gaining momentum; strong Christmas and New Year delivered
  • Commenting on the latest developments, Steve Richards, CEO, said:

“Following what has been a transformational period for the business we are delighted to mark the beginning of an exciting new era with a fresh identity to reflect our vision and plans. The Casual Dining Group has been successfully created as a substantial growth platform that comprises many of the best restaurant sites in the UK. We are now in a strong position to continue to develop and invest in our restaurant brands and aggressively grow the business.”

Martin Robinson, Chairman, added:

“The speed and breadth of change at Casual Dining Group has been dramatic, and is testament to a strong executive team led by Steve Richards. The business is in excellent shape and we can look forward to the future with confidence.”

Kornicis Achieves Record Christmas Sales

Kornicis Group, which operates bars focused around the City of London and Canary Wharf, has reported a 7% rise in like-for-like sales in the run-up to Christmas.

Its 18 London sites achieved the record sales figure in the five weeks leading up to Christmas – the sixth consecutive year of strong growth for the company over the festive period. Compounded annual sales growth over Christmas is at 5.5% for the last six years.

Kornicis Group chief executive Nick Tamblyn said: “As Christmas Day fell later in the week, a much stronger performance was seen in Christmas week itself. This trend is expected to continue for the next couple of years.”

Sales for the quarter including December showed strong like-for-like growth of 7.3%, matching the annual like-for-like performance of 7.4% for the 12 months to December 2014.

“Kornicis is well positioned to continue its expansion within London during 2015,” Nick added.