As a 50-year-old brand, the conservatively managed Spur Corp restaurant business has ambled along, focusing mainly on its eponymous family steakhouse brand and only occasionally adding a new food offering.Spur’s aggressive and expansionary competitor Famous Brands happily gobbled up many smaller outfits and built up a shipload of food brands — from Debonairs and Wimpy to Mugg & Bean, to name a few. Famous Brands was the undoubted fast-food gorilla in the room — perhaps until its costly UK foray with British burger chain GBK (bought for R2.1bn in late 2016).Spur, by contrast, tended to buy small local chains with great brand and customer reputations — and then expand them slowly throughout its nationwide network.In 1989, Spur added a pizza and pasta offering by launching the Panarottis chain — the first effort to diversify away from the core Spur brand.Overall, according to the most recent company update, Spur had 633 outlets in SA and internationally, with 87% of the business being ...

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