Strada to rebrand following spate of closures

Italian restaurant chain Strada has announced it is set to rebrand and receive “major investment” following a spate of closures at the beginning of the year.

The Italian restaurant chain closed 11 branches in England and Wales in January blaming “disappointing trading and rising costs” and was one of the first high-profile casualties of the casual dining crisis.

Private equity company Sun Capital Partners (SCP), headed by entrepreneur Hugh Osmond, acquired 43 Strada restaurants from Tragus Group for £37m in 2014. Strada operates under parent company Various Eateries, formerly SCP Restaurants. The group now has eight sites open and operational in London, Portsmouth, Sheffield and Cambridge.

The group’s parent company Various Eateries said the investment will initially focus on its three major locations: Royal Festival Hall, More London and St. Katharine Docks in London, and will include an update of the restaurant spaces, menu offering and the Strada brand.

It said the focus will be on “creating a modern Italian dining experience, without losing the warm, family friendly feel associated with Strada”. The renovations will include the creation of more relaxed lounge areas which people can use throughout the day, moving it away from being just a lunch or dinner experience.

Group chief executive Sue Walter said: “These three restaurants are performing incredibly strongly, despite the competitive market, and this new investment demonstrates our commitment to this much loved brand. We are adapting our spaces to meet the changing way in which people socialise.”

Various Eateries saw £8.6m of sales in the first quarter of its financial year October to December across its brands including Coppa Club and Strada.

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