London-based emerging markets investor Actis has bought a stake in Bellagio, one of China’s most popular casual dining chains, in a bid to continue to tap into China’s rising domestic consumption.
Best known for its Taiwanese-style dishes and shaved ice desserts, Bellagio was founded in 2001 in Shanghai by the Lin Family and today operates 35 restaurants in China, Macau and the Philippines.
Bellagio will use the funding to expand its restaurant network in top-tier Chinese cities such as Beijing and Shanghai, and second-tier cities, including Nanjing, Wuhan and Fuzhou, where spending patterns are quickly catching up with those of the first tier, the firm said.
Actis is backing former Yum China COO Joseph Han as the new chairman and CEO of Bellagio.
“We are proud to have been selected as Bellagio’s private equity partner,” said Meng Ann Lim, head of China and South East Asia at Actis.
“The Lin Family has established an immensely successful brand and created a uniquely people-oriented culture in Bellagio.
“With Mr Han at the helm, we are confident of taking the company to new heights.”
Financial terms of the deal or the size of the stake were not disclosed.
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