- McWin is investing alongside L’Osteria founders and management, led by CEO Mirko Silz, to support the continued success and expansion of the Company both in the DACH region and in multiple new and existing European markets
- Transaction values the business at nearly €400m and underpins McWin’s conviction in the European casual dining sector despite the near-term headwinds
- Leading casual dining chain in Germany, serving high quality, affordable Italian food in 157 restaurants across 8 European markets. Founded in 1999 by the current shareholders Klaus Rader and Friedemann Findeis
- Investment brings the number of restaurants in the portfolio of McWin and its affiliates to over 1,500 across Europe
McWin, a private investment firm specializing in the foodservice and food technology sectors, today announced that it has agreed to acquire a majority stake in FR L’Osteria SE (“L’Osteria” or the “Company” or “the group”), the leading casual dining operator in Germany and Austria. The transaction values the business at nearly €400m. Founders Klaus Rader and Friedemann Findeis will both remain significant minority shareholders of the Company.
Since it was founded in 1999, the quality Italian product and relentless focus on guest experience has underpinned the company’s mission towards ‘Creating moments where favourite people and favourite food come together.’ Today, the group operates 157 stores with over 6,000 employees across the DACH region, UK, France, Luxembourg, Netherlands and the Czech Republic. This new partnership with McWin will further support and accelerate the group’s expansion both in Germany and in multiple new and existing markets across Europe.
The investment in L’Osteria marks a significant investment for the EUR525m McWin Restaurant Fund (MRF), which was launched in August 2022. It is a rare opportunity to acquire a clear market leader, developed by its founders, in the largest economy in Europe.
McWin’s funds provide a unique platform focussed entirely on using in-house expertise to create substantial value in its investments across the food ecosystem, specifically food service and food technology. With the acquisition of L’Osteria, the total number of restaurants in the portfolio of McWin and its affiliates increases to 1,500.
Henry McGovern, Founding Partner at McWin, said: “In 30 years of following the European foodservice market I have rarely come across a proprietary brand with this level of quality and opportunity. We are big believers that excellent businesses like this one outperform in turbulent times. Italian cuisine is universally popular, and L’Osteria is the clear market leader in the largest economy in Europe, with a strong track record across a wide range of operating environments. We fundamentally believe that L’Osteria has the potential to become the market-leading casual dining group in Europe and look forward to working with the team to deliver on that opportunity.”
Harry Goss, Partner and Head of Food Service at McWin, added: “We are pleased to be partnering with the founders of L’Osteria, who are industry veterans having built multiple successful businesses over the last three decades, and its top-notch management team, led by CEO Mirko Silz, on their next phase of growth. The leadership team has achieved many admirable milestones, opening more than 100 restaurants in Germany, successful expansion into 7 further international markets, adept navigation of COVID and a market-leading recovery that followed it. We look forward to working with them to reach new heights over the near and medium term.”
Klaus Rader and Friedemann Findeis, Founders of L‘Osteria, said: “We are delighted to be working together with McWin on the further development of L’Osteria in the future and realising our vision “the Joy of Italy, everywhere for everyone” with them. The team around Henry McGovern and Steven K. Winegar has a rich experience in the foodservice sector as well as in brand building and expansion, which makes McWin the ideal partner for our ambitious growth and internationalisation plans. We, our leadership team and the entire L’Osteria Famiglia are looking forward to partnering with McWin and taking the L’Osteria success story to the next level.”
Mirko Silz, CEO of FR L’Osteria SE, added: “McWin integrates business know-how, entrepreneurship and deep brand expertise with a focus on sustainability and digitalization. The L’Osteria founders, my leadership team and I couldn’t wish for a better and more matching majority shareholder. We are very happy that after 24 years of successful corporate history, we are now opening a new L’Osteria chapter with McWin, which has growth and internationalisation in its title and fits 100% to our core strategy! I also want to take this opportunity to thank our franchise partners and great team for their support and loyalty – we look forward to shaping the future of the brand together with the entire L’Osteria Famiglia.”
The transaction is subject to customary regulatory requirements and is expected to close in Q1 2023. McWin was advised by Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (legal) and KPMG (financial). L’Osteria and their shareholders were advised by Ferber & Co and Deutsche Bank (both M&A), Dechert LLP (legal) and PWC and Steiner & Partner (both tax and financial).
In 1999, the first L’Osteria opened in Nuremberg and quickly became an insider tip. The success of the “nice Italian next door” encouraged the founders, Friedemann Findeis and Klaus Rader, to develop the concept further. Soon they expanded from Bavaria to all over Germany, until 2011, when they finally got their first taste of foreign air in Austria. With Switzerland, England, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, France and Luxembourg, six further European markets were added. In 2016, the two founders hired Mirko Silz as CEO. Today, L’Osteria is represented at 157 locations in eight countries. The company believes in a cooperative relationship between suppliers, partners and employees, as well as in employee development. Guests also benefit from the “La Famiglia” spirit: service and hospitality are the top priority at L’Osteria. The reliable quality of the product portfolio around the “best best pizza & pasta d’amore”, the unique atmosphere in the restaurants and the good quality-price ratio complete the concept.
McWin is a private investment ﬁrm founded by Henry McGovern and Steven K. Winegar partnering with exceptional founders and CEOs daring sustainable disruption, principally in the food service and food technology sectors.
McWin and affiliates have assets under management of over €1 billion and advise a family of private equity and venture capital funds investing in the global food service and food technology sectors at growth and mature stages. The McWin team is made up of more than 20 professionals with an additional 10+ person operating network at portfolio level to improve portfolio company operations. McWin operates with hubs in the UK, Spain and Poland and has teams on the ground in 7 countries.
McWin and affiliates are currently investors in Gail’s, Burger King Germany, White Rabbit Projects, Burger King and Popeyes CEE, CookUnity and dean&david as well as alternative protein companies including BlueNalu, Perfect Day, The Every Company (formerly Clara Foods), Impossible Foods and UPSIDE Foods (formerly Memphis Meats) and leading food technology companies such as Footprint and Oishii.
Henry McGovern is the founder of AmRest Holdings SE, one of Europe’s leading foodservice companies, which under Henry’s leadership grew to more than 2,300 restaurants in 25 countries, with 55,000+ employees. Steven K. Winegar was shareholder and senior executive of Grupo Zena and the founder of Restauravia Grupo Empresarial, Megafood SL and former board member of Telepizza. Between them, they have built or operated 4,200+ restaurants across Europe, the United States and China and have extensive experience investing in food technology and broader disruptive technologies.