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Gold Brands Investments Limited, (“Gold Brands” or the “Company” or “GBI”), listed on the JSE Alt-X, is pleased to announce that the Company has concluded a franchising deal with a leading UK restaurant operator Casual Dining Group (“CDG”). CDG operates restaurant businesses Bella Italia, Café Rouge, Las Iguanas and Belgo. Gold Brands Investments will exclusively introduce these brands to South Africa, with the first store scheduled to open during the course of 2017 and a minimum 20 opening across the country in the next five years.

The agreement is in line with Gold Brands’ vision to become the leading franchise company, both within the South African market and internationally, by offering their customers unique and authentic brands with unbeatable value. The CDG brands are complementary to Chesanyama, the Company’s award winning brand, which is increasingly gaining acceptance across higher-income customer segments and the new partnership will see Gold Brands’ exposure in these markets increasing further. As part of the deal, all products will continue to be sourced from local suppliers to deliver CDG’s recipes.

The agreement also supports CDG’s international franchising expansion strategy, and is anticipated to present growth opportunities for Gold Brands’ home grown brands in new markets. Furthermore, management expects that the partnership will transfer knowledge and experience gained by CDG internationally, to the benefit of the new and existing brands in the Company’s portfolio.

Commenting on the CDG agreement, CEO Praxia Nathanael, said:

“We believe that this partnership with CDG will deliver on a real need in the South African market where customers want new, interesting and exciting dining experiences. CDG’s restaurants fit, too, with Gold Brands’ existing brand portfolio and follows our proven track record in delivering relevant new concepts. This deal follows the consolidation of our Chesanyama store base which will see us enhance the quality of our franchise network and deliver the best possible experience to our customers. With this process in place, combined with CDG’s proven concepts, we see exciting growth opportunities for the Company.

“We’ll work closely with CDG to localise the outlets, and will use our experience and local market knowledge to ensure we put the right restaurants in the right locations. This is a really exciting development for both parties, with broader long-term societal benefits including job creation and new supply opportunities for local producers.”

Mark Nelson, CDG managing director of concessions and franchising, said:

“We are delighted to have been able to agree this deal with Gold Brands, as we firmly believe the partnership is a significant strategic step for both groups. The social demographic and cultural fit between our restaurants and South African consumers’ diet, plus the country’s acceptance of casual dining, means it is a very exciting market for us.

“This agreement also complements our franchising plans in other overseas locations, particularly North Africa, and will help us achieve our initial target of 100-plus overseas outlets, as we continue to seek other partners interested in franchise agreements with CDG.”

About Gold Brands,

Gold Brands is dedicated to growing into South Africa’s leading franchising company. Its vision is to become the leading franchise company, both within the South African as well as the International markets, by offering our customers unique and authentic brands with unbeatable value – backed by its cost-efficient and reliable supply chain and simple, clever business models. The Company started out in 2012 with only one Chesanyama store at Wits University. Encouraged by the Chesanyama franchise’s amazing growth we launched 1+1 Pizza, followed by both Pitaland and Chicken Wild Wings in 2013, and Gold Brands Sauces in 2014. In 2015, Gold Brands acquired the legendary Blacksteer brand and celebrated Chesanyama’s RASA Rosetta Award for Best Take-Away – and its 294th store. In 2016, Gold Brands listed on the JSE.

About The Casual Dining Group,

The Casual Dining Group is one of the largest independent mid-market restaurant operators in the UK, with over 300 sites located across the country. The Casual Dining Group operates primarily under the Bella Italia, Café Rouge, Las Iguanas and La Tasca formats in the UK, although also operates restaurants that trade under the brands of Belgo, La Salle, Huxley and Oriel. It also has restaurants in Asia and the Middle East, which operate under franchise.

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