Duke Street Capital, the private equity firm that owns Wagamama, has reportedly raised just €100m of its planned €1bn fund due to a lack of enthusiasm among investors in Europe. The company is targeting a €850 fund with a €1bn limit. Quoted in The Telegraph, managing director Peter Taylor said: “European markets were down as much as 70% for the first nine months of this year. That is not good for raising money. It means there is much less money out there. “There is virtually no growth in Europe and given the performance of the stock markets, investors just don’t want to put pen to paper and write a cheque for Europe. Something has to give.” The newspaper reports that Taylor, who was in Korea looking for investors, said Duke Street was offering discounts on fees and new “pockets of capital”, adding: “There are opportunities in recession time. Mostly restructuring.” However, Taylor stressed: “We have secure fee incomes on 10-year funds - that gives us lots of headroom and time to manoeuvre.” Duke Street Capital acquired Wagamama from Lion Capital for around £215m in April and has set a target of 300 UK sites - it currently operates 73.

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