Recent activist pressure on The Restaurant Group may well be dialled up after a sticky set of 2022 results from the Wagamama owner.
The company is really suffering with rising costs across the board – on energy, ingredients and staffing.
“It’s not alone and the company is still generating sales growth which is important, but that’s unlikely to be enough for some of its detractors,” AJ Bell’s Russ Mould.
“Oasis Management and Irenic Capital Management are among the institutions pressing the company to make changes – including, reportedly, selling off its pub and travel concessions arms.
“The Restaurant Group is already announcing plans to close more sites in its leisure division – the Frankie & Benny’s and Chiquito chains which offer generic Italian and Mexican food to a captive audience of shoppers and cinemagoers.
“However, the question may well be asked, why not spin off, sell off or in some way get rid of this part of the business entirely, along with the other bits, to focus on Wagamama which is clearly a restaurant brand with genuine appeal.
“Rename the business as Wagamama, clear out the rest, and you would have a streamlined and focused operation which might have more appeal to investors.”