Leon to open more than 50 restaurants creating 1,000 new jobs

LEON at Manchester Piccadilly

EG Group owned fast food brand Leon has unveiled plans to open more than 50 restaurants in the next year creating 1,000 jobs.

The company was bought by Blackburn-headquartered EG Group founders Mohsin and Zuber Issa in April this year in a deal reported to be worth about £100m.

The new plans include launching both traditional and new formats such as drive-thrus; smaller restaurants on petrol forecourts and Asda premises; and ‘Leon To Go coffee’ outlets.

The brand will also for the first time expand its footprint across the whole of the country, with openings planned in both Scotland and Wales for early 2022 creating a further 4,000 jobs over the next three years.

The new growth strategy follows strong success of newly opened restaurants, including Leon’s first drive-thru in West Yorkshire and new Leon sites in Asda Milton Keynes and Asda Holtspur in Beaconsfield.

The Issas said: “When EG Group purchased Leon this year, we saw a great brand with substantial potential for growth. We’re pleased that the business is now set to deliver on that promise, both in the UK and Europe.

“Our investment in Leon, coupled with EG’s unparalleled operational excellence in foodservice operations, is unlocking considerable value and will help to deliver significant future growth and continue the diversification of EG’s business.”

Additionally, Leon will expand into the Netherlands with its own restaurants, with the first site due to be opened in Honswijk, on one of the top five busiest motorways in the country.

This will be followed by 10 further openings in the country in advance of a wider European expansion programme.

Glenn Edwards, managing director of Leon restaurants, said: “We are very excited to announce a significant acceleration of Leon’s expansion. For the first time we will be taking Leon across the country, driving regional growth at speed. The new formats in this rollout will build on our traditional restaurants and form a base for further growth.

“Making Leon even more accessible is at the heart of this strategic expansion. We are absolutely focused on delivering for our customers and living up to Leon’s mission – making it easier for everybody to eat well, live well and be kind to the planet.”

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