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Jobs secure as Euro Garages acquires Little Chef restaurant chain from Kout Food Group

15:40 03 February 2017

Euro Garages has acquired the Little Chef chain.
Photo: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

Euro Garages has acquired the Little Chef chain. Photo: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

The network of Little Chef restaurants has been acquired by Euro Garages, the UK’s largest roadside retail operator.

Kout Food Group (KFG) stepped in to save the Little Chef name in 2013 when other potential purchasers including McDonald’s, KFC and Costa reportedly planned to rebrand the sites.

KFG, which has since opened Burger King and Subway units at many of the locations, has now sold the 78 properties to Euro Garages, along with rights to use the Little Chef and other related brands.

“As part of its commitment to the communities in which it operates, KFG has ensured continued employment for all its roadside employees and is confident that Euro Garages will continue to develop the strength of the people and roadside brands as well continue to serve their road side customers,” said KFG.

A spokesman for Intervias, parent company of Euro Garages, said: “This transaction forms part of our growth plan to acquire and develop strategically-positioned sites, allowing us to bring a portfolio of market-leading brands to consumers and communities across the UK and elsewhere in Europe.

“It also consolidates Euro Garages’ position as the UK’s leading roadside retail operator.”

The Little Chef website lists restaurants at Coddenham and Newmarket on the A14 in Suffolk, Hethersett on the A11 and Acle on the A47 in Norfolk and Feering on the A12 in Essex.

Euro Garages already operates two Starbucks coffee shops on the A12, at Capel St Mary in Suffolk and Rivenhall in Essex.

Famous for its large “Olympic” breakfasts and “Fat Charlie” logo, Little Chef began life as an 11-seat restaurant in Reading, Berkshire, in 1958.

It flourished through the 1970s and 80s but has struggled in more recent times, being rescued from administration in 2007 by RCapital which successfully put a turnaround plan in place before selling the business to Kuwait-based KFG.

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