Published 1 April 2022
By Josh Barrie
The restaurant group Corbin & King has been bought by the Minor Hotel Group, CODE can reveal.
Corbin & King co-founder Jeremy King, known for helping to establish the likes of The Wolseley and Brasserie Zedel, confirmed the sale in the early hours of Friday morning.
Minor, which at the time held a 74 per cent stake in the group, had placed the Corbin & King holding company into administration in January following a lengthy dispute between the two during the pandemic.
Thailand-based Minor had called on the company to repay almost £34m of loans.
Corbin & King were then assisted by the US financial firm Knighthead with a view to fully acquire the company.
The administrators were left in place and a sales process was finally held today (April 1) to establish the new owners.
After two months of speculation and uncertainty, Mr King said early this morning that attempts to buy the whole business and its assets, including all the restaurants, had failed.
Mr King said in a statement sent to CODE: “We took part in the auction to try and buy the business and assets of Corbin & King that we didn’t already own, including of course all the restaurants.
“Regrettably, that attempt failed and Minor Hotel Group was the successful bidder, buying the entire business.”
Minor is said to have paid more than £60m for the business.
This morning, Minor International Public Company Limited (MINT) released a statement detailing the sale and said it “is heavily invested both in the UK and globally as an owner, operator and JV partner of a portfolio of more than 3,300 restaurants.”
MINT also owns brands such Trader Vic’s and Zuma.
Dillip Rajakarier, Group CEO of Minor International, said: “We have exciting growth plans for the business and are delighted to embark on this journey with our outstanding employees, the company’s key stakeholders, and, of course, our valued customers.”
At the time of writing, Mr King remained an employee of Corbin & King.
Sky News reported after CODE’s report was published that Mr King is expected to leave the popular restaurant group he helped build.
CODE Hospitality updated this story on 1 April to include a statement from Minor Hotels.