Neil Perry merger
QANTAS food and wine consultant Neil Perry has merged his Rockpool Group of restaurants and burger bars with Urban Purveyor Group (UPG) to create The Rockpool Dining Group. The $100 million deal has resulted in one Australia’s largest restaurant collections with 47 venues under one umbrella. UPG’S 32 venues, including Sake, Fratelli Fresh and the Bavarian Bier Café, have now joined Perry’s Rockpool, Spice Temple and Rosetta restaurants plus his Burger Project stores. The amalgamation does not affect or include Perry’s consultancy with Qantas or his flagship Sydney restaurant 11 Bridge Street (previously Rockpool 1989). “After almost 30 years at the forefront of Australia’s dining scene, this new partnership will give us the opportunity to grow into one of the world’s largest, most recognised and most sustainable hospitality businesses,” Perry announced on his blog. “Our dining portfolio has bloomed overnight to encompass 15 incredible brands over 47 venues, and our family has grown from 1,000 to 3,000 – and counting”. Perry has taken on the role of Head of Culinary, his business partner Trish Richards has joined the group’s finance team while UPG’S CEO Tom Pash continues as head of the new company. Pash said the new hospitality group would grow from 47 venues to 80 within the next year. The team is already mulling opening its first overseas restaurant, with Perry noting he had wanted to open a restaurant in London for a long time Within Australia there are plans in the pipeline for a Rockpool Bar & Grill in Brisbane, a new Rosetta at Grosvenor Place in Sydney as well as multiple new locations for fast-casual eateries: Burger Project, Fratelli Famous and Sake Jr. Perry assured his customers that while there were “many exciting changes on the horizon, the heart of what we do each and every day will not waver”. “Rockpool Dining Group will continue to offer the same progressive approach to dining that we have forged,” he said.