Nando’s spent nearly £90m setting up and fitting out new restaurants last year.
The company’s latest accounts, for the year to 24 February 2019, reveal that capex at the casual dining chain reached £87.9m as it invested in new restaurants and infrastructure and expanded its international footprint.
The chain said the outlay reflects its “high levels” of confidence in its business and growth prospects even though the figure was a £13m reduction on the £101.5m it shelled out the year before.
Nando’s joined the billion pound turnover club following the publication of its latest accounts.
Sales at the chain rose 8% year-on-year to £1.05 billion, an £82m increase that it attributes to organic growth in key markets along with increased revenues associated with franchise acquisitions.
Operating profit fell slightly from £42.8m to £41.9m which was largely due to higher costs and the level of capex.
Nearly 80% of the company’s 936 restaurants are self-owned, with the rest operated by franchisees.
In its accounts, the company also gave a nod to the importance of global menu development in driving its growth.
It stated: “Our commercial teams continuously develop new products to maintain and exciting and varied menus. Seasonal changes are taken into account as are market related requirements, for example in the Middle East we offer non-alcoholic designer drinks while in India we have a larger than usual vegetarian offering.
“This ongoing focus on menu innovation throughout the group has allowed us to successfully launch a range of new products, tapping into new occasions and consumer segments and an ongoing need for variety,” it added.