Food entrepreneur saves Ed’s Easy Diner

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RANJIT BOPARAN, the Birmingham-based food entrepreneur, has made another eye-catching purchase buying 33 Ed’s Easy Diner restaurants.

However the deal, which saw the American-themed diner appoint administrators to ensure it could be saved, will also result in the closure of 26 restaurants and the loss of 379 jobs.

Five of the seven restaurants across the North West will close – in Blackpool, Blackburn, Carlisle, Chester and Manchester Debenhams.

Two sites – at Cheshire oaks and Lord Street in Liverpool – will remain open and transfer to Giraffe Concepts, part of Boparan Restaurant Holdings, which has taken over all of the remaining restaurants, as well as the Ed’s Easy Diner brand and head office. Around 700 staff will transfer over to fast-growing Giraffe.

Boparan, who is the owner of 2 Sisters Food Group and Harry Ramsden’s, bought Bernard Matthews last month and Giraffe restaurants in June.

In a statement, Giraffe’s managing director Tom Crowley said: “Ed’s Easy Diner has been an integral part of the UK casual dining scene for the past four decades and we are very excited about the business joining the group and the opportunities ahead.”

A sale process had been underway for most of this year for the chain of diners, which has grown quickly in the last few years.

At its culmination, Rob Croxen and Blair Nimmo from KPMG were appointed joint administrators to Ed’s Easy Diner Group, Ed’s Easy Diner Holdings and Ed’s Easy Diner Overseas.

Croxen said: “While we are pleased the transaction preserves around 700 jobs, our immediate priority in the coming days will be to liaise with those employees who have been affected by redundancy and ensure that in addition to receiving all back pay owed, they are provided with any assistance they need.”