Owner of Sorbet and Sportmans Warehouse increases its stake in Spur

Long4Life [JSE:L4L], the investment group headed by Bidvest founder Brian Joffe, has bought 9.2 million shares in restaurant franchisor the Spur Corporation [JSE:SUR]. 

In an update to shareholders on Tuesday, Spur said that Long4Life now holds 12.5% of the its shares, up from 4% previously, and 14.3% of voting rights. 

The Spur Corporation includes the brands Panarottis Pizza Pasta, Spur Steak Ranches, Spur Grill & Go, John Dory’s Fish Grill Sushi, RocoMamas, The Hussar Grill, Casa Bella and Nikos Coalgrill Greek.

Long4Life owns the beauty salon Sorbet as well as Holdsport (Sportsmans Warehouse and other brands).  

Analyst Anthony Clark of Small Talk Daily Research said in a note to Fin24 on Tuesday there had been a great deal of movement in the Spur share price in the last few months.

In his view Long4Life would probably not make a transactional bid for Spur, and Joffe likely bought the stock as an investment. The group's current share price of around R24 a share, while "interesting and reasonable priced," was not "bargain basement".

"There is no sign yet that the competitive landscape in the fast food sector is abating," said Clark, adding that StatsSA numbers show lacklustre rises in fast food sales. Low economic growth and low wage inflation growth, plus expensive fuel, means there is not much money left at the end of the week for discretionary dining.  

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