IRC to delist as takeover goes unconditional

Individual Restaurant Company is to be taken private by the W2D2 consortium that includes Iceland founder Malcolm Walker.

W2D2 now controls 75.77% of the issued share capital of IRC and has declared the takeover offer unconditional ahead of the deadline for shareholders to vote by 22 June. The takeover offer of 9.5p/share valued the business at £5.67m.

Manchester-based IRC owns and operates 22 Piccolinos and 11 Restaurant Bar & Grills around the country.

W2D2 is made up of IRC chief executive Steven Walker, Malcolm Walker and fellow investors Tarsem Dhaliwel and Paul Dawes.

In a separate stock exchange announcement, IRC said Robert Breare, chairman, will tell the annual general meeting today that the first quarter of 2011 saw like-for-like sales growth.

His statement continued: "Encouragingly all of this growth came from increased customer numbers and we have continued to experience like-for-like sales growth in the same way, over the six week period ended 15 May.

"The positive impact on EBITDA generated from the growth in sales has been significantly eroded by cost inflation and we are mindful that cost inflation for example in relation to alcohol duty, beef and dairy prices is set to continue over the remainder of the year. The ability of the group to absorb most, if not all, of these inflationary pressures will depend upon the buoyancy of consumer spending going forward."

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