Industry legend Luke Johnson buys into steak chain Gaucho

Gaucho Group Tower Bridge

Gaucho Group, the leading Argentine steak restaurant chain, has appointed industry mogul Luke Johnson as non-executive chairman. 

One of the UK’s most respected entrepreneurs in the hospitality and leisure sectors, Johnson is currently chairman of Patisserie Holdings, Bread Holdings (owner of Gail’s), 3Sixty Restaurants, Feng Sushi, Draft House, Grand Union and Genuine Dining. Previously he was Chairman of PizzaExpress, Giraffe and Strada.

Zeev Godik, chief executive of the Gaucho Group, says that Johnson’s appointment, and his acquisition of a stake in the company, will bring refreshing, new and highly respected expertise into the business: “Luke has been at the forefront of some of the most dynamic expansion programmes in hospitality. He has overseen over 500 restaurant and pub openings, more than any other individual in the sector, and his record in launching successful IPOs is second-to-none.

“His financial astuteness will be an invaluable asset for our own future plans, but what is equally important to us is a shared passion for the industry, his understanding of what makes a restaurant tick when it comes to quality, service and repeat business”

Luke JohnsonLuke Johnson said: “I am very excited to be working with Zeev and his team.  I have been an admirer of Gaucho for many years, and look forward to helping with the expansion of the business.  I see a great future for Gaucho and its new sibling CAU, both here and abroad, which is why I have invested a substantial sum in backing the business.”

The first Gaucho restaurant in the UK was opened 22 years ago, and the company now operates 14 premium restaurants in the UK under the Gaucho brand, with more to open in 2017.  There are also Gaucho-owned restaurants in Dubai, Hong Kong as well as Argentina, where the group’s much- acclaimed award winning restaurant Sucre is highly regarded throughout South America.

Consistency is the key to Gaucho’s success; serving excellent food with strong Argentine provenance; beautifully designed interiors, and the highest level of service.

Gaucho Group also operates the fast-growing mid-market CAU brand, with 18 restaurants in the UK, filling a gap in the high street for a high quality but casual dining experience which can suit any occasion and any pocket.

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