Tortilla chain set to float with plans for 45 new sites

Tortilla, the largest and most successful UK fast-casual Mexican restaurant group, has today announced its intention to seek admission of its shares to trading on AIM, a market of the London Stock Exchange.

Tortilla is targeting circa 45 new sites over the next five years including building on the success of the existing portfolio of delivery-only 'cloud-kitchens'. The Directors are also targeting further franchising and licencing opportunities.

Tortilla, which specialises in freshly made Californian-inspired Mexican cuisine, has 62 sites worldwide, comprising 50 sites in the UK operated by the group, two sites franchised to Select Service Partners UK Limited (SSP Group) in the UK, and 10 franchised sites in the Middle East.

The brand is synonymous with an energetic, vibrant culture, and with providing a great value-for-money proposition.

It embraces fast-growing sector trends (including eating out, healthy eating, provenance, ethnic cuisine, delivery) across a variety of locations, through a differentiated product offering, which is popular with a broad customer base, and a clearly defined multi-channel marketing strategy.

The brand also benefits from flexible site locations and formats, and a scalable central infrastructure.

Tortilla is also pleased to announce that Emma Woods has joined the Tortilla Board of Directors as non-executive chairwoman and Laurence Keen as a non-executive director. Woods has extensive experience at Board level in multi-site leisure businesses.

She is currently a non-executive director for The Gym Group plc and her hospitality experience includes being the CEO of Wagamama from December 2018 to June 2021. Laurence is currently CFO of Hollywood Bowl Group plc.

Tortilla has established a track record of strong financial performance driven by consistent expansion of the property portfolio and like-for-like growth. From FY2019 to LTM June 2021, the group generated 250%.

EBITDA grew and the firm opened eight stores. For the 12 months to June 2021, Tortilla outperformed the Coffer Peach Business Tracker by an average of 46 percentage points.

The Directors believe the group is strongly positioned to capitalise on further growth opportunities in the post-Covid-19 pandemic landscape.

The economic challenges facing the hospitality sector have resulted in a dramatically increased number of vacant units on the market with rent levels rebalancing to more sustainable levels, providing Tortilla with an unprecedented opportunity to accelerate its UK rollout strategy.