As fish and chips celebrate their 150th birthday, the world’s most famous fish and chip shop chain, Harry Ramsden’s, has today been acquired by a leading UK food and restaurant entrepreneur in a deal that’s set to create jobs, provide a springboard for expansion and revitalise this iconic brand.
The deal comes less than a year after the new owner, Ranjit Boparan of Boparan Ventures Limited, rescued the flagging Fishworks restaurant chain, bucking the recent trend of restaurant failures by turning the business into a thriving success under CEO Marija Simovic and her team. And, this new acquisition comes with ambitious plans to take Britain’s longest established restaurant chain to a whole new level of success.
“Harry Ramsden’s is a great British institution and we want to put it back on the map by focusing on the fundamental basics of superb service, exceptional value and, most importantly, the very best tasting fish and chips you can buy”, said Mr. Boparan. “And, we’re planning to open a further 100 locations within the next 5 years and expect to create around 600 new jobs, taking care to ensure that customers are guaranteed the same consistent quality at every single store”.
Founded in 1928, there are currently 36 restaurants and takeaways within the Harry Ramsden business including the largest fish and chip shop in the world in Guiseley, Leeds.
At 43, Ranjit Boparan is one of the UK’s most successful self-made young entrepreneurs, owning a number of businesses in the food sector, responsible for over 6,000 employees worldwide and combined annual sales approaching GBP1 billion.
As well as Fishworks and now Harry Ramsden’s, Ranjit Boparan owns a number of successful businesses in the food sector including international poultry processor 2 Sisters Food Group
- The new CEO of Harry Ramsden’s is Marija Simovic, who will also continue to oversee Fishworks. Marija is a 20-year veteran of the food industry, mainly in various Board Director roles at YUM, the world’s
largest restaurant company
- Harry Ramsden started selling fish and chips from a wooden hut in Guiseley, West Yorkshire in 1928 and his secret recipe is still used today
- The UK has an estimated 10,500 fish and chip shops in a market worth around GBP1.2bn. On any Friday, they account for one in five takeaways. One in six UK adults enjoys fish and chips at least once a week, making it the nation’s favourite takeaway
- Fish and chips are the healthy choice, with typically a third fewer calories than other popular takeaways. A fish supper has approximately three times less fat than chicken tikka masala with rice and an average
serving contains more than double the fibre found in a typical serving of brown rice or a bowl of porridge.