Bigger pizza the action as dough rises at Prezzo

PASTA and pizza chain Prezzo is to add up to 30 restaurants to its estate this year after serving up another healthy rise in profits yesterday.

Prezzo are expanding in Edinburgh. Picture: Jayne Wright
Prezzo are expanding in Edinburgh. Picture: Jayne Wright

The Scotsman revealed earlier this week that the group is opening a Mexican-themed eaterie under its Chimichanga banner on the site of the former Bar Roma in the west end of Edinburgh next month.

Prezzo opened 28 sites last year as it expanded to 237 outlets and lifted underlying profits by 11 per cent to £20.4 million.

The opening programme provided it with its first presence in major cities such as Belfast and Leeds, as well as additional sites in Bath, Oxford and Glasgow.

Chairman Michael Carlton said the company’s record of growth during the economic downturn meant there was “every reason to be positive” about future performance now that the UK’s prospects were improving.

He added: “We have enjoyed an encouraging start to the year and with a strong site pipeline in place, the board is confident of further success in 2014.”

The company said it saw positive early signs for Cleaver, which offers meat from an open grill kitchen, following the launch of the brand last summer.

The board recommended that the company’s final dividend payment be increased by 13 per cent to 0.31p a share.

Initially called Jonathans, the group opened in November 2000 and floated on the Alternative Investment Market in March 2002. It is controlled by the Kaye restaurant dynasty.