Private equity firm, Rutland Partners has acquired the restaurant segment of Pizza Hut’s business in the UK, and announced plans to invest £60m into the refurbishment and restructuring of the company.
Rutland announced that it had bought the share capital of Pizza Hut UK after a franchise agreement with U.S owner, Yum Brands, which also owns KFC and Taco Bell.
Yum Brands will retain Pizza Hut UK’s delivery service, while Rutland plans to keep the current management team at the restaurant franchise under the leadership of Managing Director, Jens Hofma.
Mr Hofma has been in the media for his hands on approach at the restaurant chain since he joined in 2009, and has been known to regularly spend time serving food to customers at the Oxford Street Pizza Hut branch in London.
Mr Hofma commented on Friday’s announcement: “I am truly delighted that we have secured new investment into the business.
“Throughout the sale process, Rutland Partners, above all others, has demonstrated a level of ambition and enthusiasm that matches our own drive for the transformation of our business.“
A strategy to improve the Pizza Hut business has been in formation over the last two years, according to Rutland Partners, and a decision was made to seek external funding from an experienced investor.
Managing Partner of Rutland, Nick Morrill, said: “We have been very impressed by the energy and capability of the team at all levels of the business and we are excited by the prospect of working with the management to drive the turnaround to completion.
“We are excited about the iconic appeal of the Pizza Hut brand and its status as the leading casual dining brand in the UK. “
He said: “The recent positive momentum within the business has given all parties renewed confidence that the strategy of putting the guest at the centre of everything we do is the right one.
“The new investment and expertise that Rutland brings to the brand will help the team to further enhance the guest experience and complete the turnaround story.”