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Zorawar & Everstone tie-up for massive global expansion


The 50% equity purchase into Massive will also see F&B Asia Ventures’ Indian restaurants business now under Zorawar’s management.

F&B Asia Ventures, a unit of private equity major Everstone Capital, is picking up a 50% stake in Massive Restaurants. The deal will see F&B Asia Ventures combining its Indian restaurants business with Massive under the 37-year-old Zorawar Kalra’s management. The combined entity will have brands like Masala Library by Jiggs Kalra, Made in Punjab, Farzi Cafe and Pind Balluchi, the last coming from the stables of the Everstone company.

The size of the deal could not be ascertained immediately, but one source said it was around USD 15 million. The remaining 50% stake will be mostly owned by Kalra even as Gaurav Goenka, who backed Massive Restaurants in early stages, will remain as an investor. Jiggs Kalra will continue to be mentor and adviser to the combined business.

Kalra has ambitious plans to expand across India and overseas too. “We have some cutting-edge Indian restaurant brands that can go global, while retaining a sharp focus on the domestic market,” said Kalra.

Massive will start its overseas expansion with a restaurant opening in Dubai in November this year. He has ambitions of building a INR 300-400 crore Indian restaurant business in the next five years. The deal is touted as a combination of the Kalra family’s expertise in food and Everstone’s money to build a restaurant company of scale. Investment bank Lodha Capital Markets is said to have advised on the transaction.

F&B Asia Ventures, in which Everstone has invested Rs 1,200 crore, owns Burger King operations in India and Indonesia, Domino’s Pizza in Indonesia and Singapore-based restopub chain Harry’s, among others. The latest deal will make Everstone — which also owns Blue Foods that runs brands like Spaghetti Kitchen, Noodle Bar, Bombay Blue and Copper Chimney — the largest owner of fine dining restaurants in India.

Kalra launched Massive Restaurants after selling Lite Bite Foods, which owned Punjab Grill, to the Burmans of Dabur.

Everstone, managing assets worth over USD 2.7 billion, has been the most bullish PE investor in India’s restaurant market — fine-dining segment in particular. Other notable F&B investors include CX Partners, New Silk Route, Sequoia Capital and PremjiInvest.

Source: Times of India

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