CVC completes buyout of China’s South Beauty

The firm has partnered with management to acquire a majority stake in the restaurant business.

CVC Capital Partners has made an undisclosed investment in Chinese restaurant chain South Beauty, partnering with the company chairman Lan Zhang, according to a statement.

The firm has already received regulatory approval and is now the major shareholder in the business, with Zhang remaining as a shareholder.

Financial details of the transaction have not been released. No one at CVC was available for further comment before press time.

South Beauty, a mid- to high-end restaurant chain in China, is hoping to expand its footprint across Chinese cities, targeting commercial areas in particular. The company is also exploring new business models, including home delivery and banquet services.

''CVC's vision for South Beauty highly aligns with ours in respect of brand positioning, future growth areas, corporate culture and values. More importantly, CVC's investment will help South Beauty drive greater economies of scale and increase operational efficiency,” Zhang said in a statement.

Francis Leung, CVC managing partner and chairman of Greater China, added, “[We] are impressed by [South Beauty’s] deep industry insights and knowledge as well as strong execution capabilities. We are confident that together with the management team, we will develop South Beauty's brand potential to the fullest.”

CVC is currently in fundraising mode for its fourth Asia Pacific vehicle that had raised $3 billion as of late February, Private Equity International reported earlier. The fund is on-track to meet its $3.5 billion target and in March raised a further $100 million from Japanese banks Sumitomo Mitsui Trust and Japan Bank for International Cooperation. 

Also in March, CVC acquired a controlling stake in dumpling restaurant chain Da Niang Dumpling, which is in 19 provinces across China. The firm hopes to scale up the business, and had employed Jeremy Hobbins, a 30-year retail sector veteran in Hong Kong as a senior advisor to help with operations in its consumer portfolio companies just two months earlier.