Greene King has completed the purchase of the Loch Fyne chain of restaurants in the UK.

The regional brewer and pub operator confirmed today (7 August) that it has bought the 36-strong seafood restaurant business for GBP68.1m (US$137.7m). The restaurant business, which concentrates its presence in the south-east of the country, is looking to up its number of outlets by around 20% within the coming financial year, with Greene King considering changing some of its pubs into Loch Fyne outlets.

In the twelve months to June 2008, Loch Fyne's post-overhead EBITDA is projected to be in excess of GBP8m, Greene King said. The purchase will be financed from existing debt facilities and is expected to be earnings-enhancing in the first full year of ownership.

"Loch Fyne is a high quality, well-respected British restaurant brand which gives us greater access to the premium end of the market and brings to our business further operational expertise," said Rooney Anand, Greene King's chief executive. "We have a strong track record of maximising the benefits from our acquisitions and this will be no exception: we greatly look forward to welcoming our new colleagues on board."

Mark Derry, chief executive of Loch Fyne Restaurants, added: "We're delighted to have found a buyer who recognises our strengths and whose style of management fits so well with our own. We believe our customers and employees will have every reason to celebrate the agreement."