Gaucho exits administration after CVA process with new developments revealed

Gaucho has officially announced that it has been acquired by Lomo Bidco (a vehicle wholly owned by Investec and SC Lowy), who have bought the business out of Administration.

Martin Williams, a well known and successful restauranteur in the London and UK restaurant sector, currently shortlisted as ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’, will lead the business and, with the support of Investec and SC Lowy, will deliver on their vision for the much-loved UK-wide restaurant business.

Williams, a former M.D of Gaucho, brings over 20 years of restaurant experience to the brand and will lead the Management team, which has been expanded with a number of new hires of top calibre individuals. Martin will maintain his role as CEO of M Restaurants, the successful restaurant group he established in 2014.

The new vision, which will be implemented immediately, will build on everything about the Gaucho heritage that is loved: modern Latin American food and drink, an exciting, internationally-appealing atmosphere and experiential style of service. The Management team has further plans for 2019 onwards to include refurbishments and a new brand direction.

A new menu, launched this week, retains favourite iconic dishes but also introduces a wider selection of Latin American style items to the offering at Gaucho. The new menu features both ‘Classic’ and ‘Nuevo’ sections, offering a preview of how the Management team plans to develop the business during 2019: a transformation of the brand that both embraces Gaucho’s history but that mirrors the innovation, modernity and style that define the spirit of Latin America today.

Immediate developments
The new Gaucho leadership team have planned a programme of unique and exciting events to kickstart and celebrate the next chapter:
o A world class, evolving series of pop-ups with world-renowned chefs including:
- The Gonzalez brothers, behind Lima, the London team behind the Latin American and
Michelin-starred brand, Lima (30/31 October 2018)
- Germa´n Martitegui of ‘World’s 50 Best restaurant’ Buenos Aires based Tegui (March
2019)
o Winemaker Dinners and the ‘Argentine Wine Awards’ competition
o Bar takeover
o Master Mixologist Tato Giovanonni behind 14th ‘Worlds Best Bar’, Floreria Atlantico, Buenos Aires (March 2019)

Six key appointments have been made which will strengthen the Gaucho leadership and complement Williams' know-how in the sector. Each of these individuals has been identified by him as being of the highest calibre in their speciality, sharing the vision of Williams and the shareholders for Gaucho and with a proven ability to drive the business forward.

Williams said, “Congratulations to Investec and SC Lowy on supporting Gaucho through this difficult period and ensuring the survival of the business and safeguarding over 700 jobs. Investec and SC Lowy believe Gaucho is a great business and a brand which can be taken to new heights. I am delighted to be leading this incredible journey which will re-establish the brand as the leading premium restaurant group in the UK and diners’ ‘go to’ favourite.

“The future of Gaucho will embrace the heritage of the brand and its 24 years as a UK institution and simultaneously partner with and be inspired by the most modern world-class innovators of food and drink who are taking both Latin America and the world by storm. We have the world’s best Latin American talent joining us for a series of celebrations to start the evolved Gaucho journey!

“In an incredibly challenging environment for the restaurant sector, it is fantastic to be heading up both M and Gaucho – I am delighted that I have the best talent in UK Hospitality working with me in both companies and proud that we will be delivering outstanding experiences for the increasingly discerning diners of the UK.”

Investec and SC Lowy commented, “We are delighted that Gaucho has been able to exit from this troubled period and through our support the survival of the business has been ensured. We know the brand and business well and have utmost confidence that there is a bright future ahead.

'We are extremely pleased to have brought Martin on board and are fully committed to support the vision for the business, including investment in restaurants and the brand. This is an exciting time for Gaucho and we look forward to the Gaucho proposition leading re-engagement with our customers.”