Wagamama owner Restaurant Group’s chairman to step down

(Reuters) -Wagamama owner Restaurant Group said on Friday Chairman Ken Hanna will step down after months of pressure from activist investors to change its management and improve profitability.

Hanna, who took over as the group’s chairman at the start of January 2022, will remain its chair until a successor is appointed.

He had also held the role of chairman at car dealer Inchcape and equipment rental firm Aggreko.

The Restaurant Group management has come under fire from activist shareholders Oasis Management and Irenic Capital Management seeking changes at the company, whose shares lost two-thirds of their value last year.

Hanna informed of his intention not to seek re-election at the group’s next annual general meeting in 2024 due to personal reasons, the company said in a statement.

“A hugely valued colleague during a critically important period for TRG as we have successfully recovered from the Covid pandemic and made good progress with our strategy,” CEO Andy Hornby said.

The group, which also owns the Brunning & Price restaurants, earlier this week projected its annual profit to be higher after posting an increase in first-half earnings as more people dined at its restaurant and pubs.

(Reporting by Radhika Anilkumar in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)