Pret a Manger has reached an agreement to buy rival sandwich chain Eat for an undisclosed amount as it looks to boost its plant-based offer.
Announcing the deal today, Pret said it plans to convert as many of Eat’s shops as possible into ‘Veggie Prets’ to meet “growing demand for more vegetarian and vegan options on the high street”.
Currently, there are only four ‘Veggie Pret’ locations across London and Manchester, and the acquisition of Eat’s estate of some 90 stores across the UK would enable it to “significantly accelerate” the growth of the brand, Pret claimed.
“We have been developing the Veggie Pret concept for over two years and we now have four hugely successful shops across London and Manchester,” said CEO Clive Schlee.
“The acquisition of the Eat estate is a wonderful opportunity to turbo-charge the development of Veggie Pret and put significant resources behind it.”
The deal with Pret would create “new opportunities for employees and customers alike”, said Eat CEO Andrew Walker, who has led the business for three years.
Eat chairman Andrew Aylwin said the deal with Pret was a “strong strategic fit with benefits for all concerned”.
The deal, which has been rumoured since earlier this month, will now be subject to UK Competition & Markets Authority approval.