Industry News | November 4, 2002

UK-based PizzaExpress Reviewing Purchase Offer

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The United Kingdom restaurant chain PizzaExpress PLC says it is reviewing an offer to purchase from Twigway PLC for between 330 and 350 pence-a-share.

The unconfirmed price range would place the chain’s value at GBP237-GBP251 million. PizzaExpress’ current market capitalization stands at GBP230 million.

Several analysts have declared the price too low, including KBC Peel Hunt analyst Paul Hickman, who, according to Dow Jones, values the company at 415 pence-a-share.

PizzaExpress operates 300 pizza and pasta restaurants in the U.K. The company had a pretax profit for the year ending June 30, 2002 of GBP39.7 million, down 2%. Comparable store sales were up 1% and 29 new stores were opened in fiscal 2002 despite a challenging market.

Twigway is a private equity firm and the largest investor in the fast food chain Nando’s International.