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LDC backs £50m MBO for restaurant group D&D London

22 Apr 2013

UK mid-market private equity firm LDC has backed the £50m management buyout of restaurant group D&D London.

LDC will buy out vendors Conran Holdings and private equity investors Caird Capital, with the company’s senior management retaining their investment in the business.

Caird first invested back in September 2006. While the firm did not disclose returns data, the cash-to-cash return since the investment date were said to be “positive and satisfactory”, according to a source familiar with the deal.

The deal will enable the company to fund further domestic and international expansion, it said, as well as invest in and enhance its portfolio of outlets.

CEO Des Gunewardena and managing director David Loewi, who originally formed D&D London in 2006, following a partial management buyout of the business, then known as Conran Restaurants, from Conran Holdings, have built the company into one of the world’s leading restaurant groups.

D&D London owns and operates over 30 premium restaurants globally. In the UK its focus is on central London, including Coq d’Argent in the City, Quaglino’s in Mayfair, the Bluebird in Chelsea and Plateau in Canary Wharf.

Daniel Sasaki, managing director of LDC, said, “D&D London has demonstrated a fantastic ability to create enduring premium restaurant concepts and many of its outlets are regarded as among the world’s most famous restaurants. We are delighted to be backing Des and David, who lead an outstanding management team, to further enhance D&D’s growth and performance through investing in the group’s current portfolio while also opening new sites. With its iconic restaurants and diversification into hotels, D&D has an exciting strategy and we look forward to helping the group unlock its global potential.”

Recent investments from LDC in the retail and consumer sector include New World Pubco, Fever Tree, Original Additions and musicMagpie.

In April, the firm exited its stake in UK nursery care provider kidsunlimited after trade buyer Bright Horizons Family Solutions bought the business in a £45m cash deal.

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