Business

Gaucho to close Cau chain and axe 540 jobs


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EPA

The Gaucho restaurant group is closing down its Cau chain at the cost of 540 jobs.

Accountancy firm Deloitte has been appointed as the administrator to the specialist steak group.

It said all 22 branches of Cau would close to allow the group to focus on selling the Gaucho Grill chain.

Deloitte described Cau as “significantly loss-making” after reporting three consecutive years of falling sales.

Joint administrator Matt Smith said: “Unfortunately the Cau brand has struggled in the oversupplied casual dining sector with rapid over-expansion, poor site selection, onerous lease arrangements and a fundamentally poor guest proposition all being factors in its underperformance.

“The Gaucho business on the other hand, which operates in the premium dining market, continues to trade well in its market segment, is profitable and has a strong underlying brand and guest loyalty.”

Mr Smith added: “We are taking steps to stabilise the business following our appointment and are now seeking expressions of interest in terms of a sale of the Gaucho business.”

Gaucho specialises in Argentinean steaks and fine wine and is owned by the private equity firm Equistone.

It has 16 restaurants in London, Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester, Edinburgh, Dubai and Hong Kong.



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