Fulham Shore has received a recommended cash offer from Japanese food conglomerate Toridoll, valuing the group at £93.4m.

The Franco Manca and Real Greek operator said its board had voted unanimously to approve the takeover, which is backed by partner Capdesia. 

Toridoll, founded in 1990, is a global food company listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange with c£1bn consolidated net sales and a current market capitalisation of approximately £1.5bn.

It aims to have over 5,500 stores worldwide across diverse group brands both in Japan and overseas, with current European brands including Marugame Udon, Shoryu Ramen, and Wok to Walk.

Toridoll, which has incorporated new company Bidco for the acquisition has Bidco, described Fulham Shore’s restaurants as offering a “leading customer proposition with authentic high-quality food at affordable prices”

In spite of challenging trading circumstances, Toridoll says Fulham Shore has delivered a robust performance overseen by its experienced management teamm and is well positioned to benefit from favourable market trends – particularly growing demand for Italian cuisine – and that its differentiated operating model will put it at the forefront of that growth.

The Japanese group also recognises the opportunity for Fulham Shore to expand its UK presence – where its 97 sites reflect under-penetration compared to peers – as well as internationally, where the strength of the brands and the offering are expected to resonate well.

It also sees opportunity for expansion through retail channels, where Franco Manca’s nascent offering of cook-at-home pizzas is demonstrating encouraging progress.

Alongside the wider Toridoll group - and its partner for the acquisition, Capdesia - Fulham Shore brings “a unique combination of expertise, industry knowledge, and a demonstrable track record of growing restaurant brands that will support Fulham Shore’s management team as they implement the business’ expansion strategy.”

Commenting on the acquisition, David Page, executive chairman of Fulham Shore, said: “We are proud of the significant progress that Fulham Shore has made since it was founded in 2012. We are proud of our two brands, Franco Manca and The Real Greek, and the growth we have delivered for Fulham Shore.

“Whilst we remain excited about the prospects for the business on a standalone basis, we have been in discussions with both Toridoll and Capdesia and received a proposal that we believe is compelling for all of our stakeholders. We believe Toridoll and Capdesia’s experience in successfully building restaurant businesses and their long-term vision for Fulham Shore, will enable Fulham Shore to fulfil its long-term potential.

“Having carefully considered the range of options available to Fulham Shore, including the terms of the proposed acquisition, the independent Fulham Shore directors have concluded that the acquisition, which offers certainty of cash value to Fulham Shore shareholders, is in the best interests of Fulham Shore, its shareholders and wider stakeholders, and as such are unanimously recommending the acquisition to shareholders.”

Takaya Awata, president and CEO of Toridoll, said: “Fulham Shore has two exciting and fast growing brands that are aligned with Toridoll’s slogan of ’Filling Our Planet with Dining Experiences that will Move You’. We are confident that both have the potential for significant future growth, domestically and internationally.

“Together with the strength of these brands and our partnership with restaurant sector specialist fund Capdesia, we have the opportunity to leverage our combined expertise and significant resources to accelerate their growth even further. We look forward to working closely with Fulham Shore’s management and employees as we embark on the next stage of the company’s growth.”