The fall from grace of the fast-food and quick-service restaurant sector largely reflects the extremely weak SA economy, and the brutal bouts of load shedding will also probably dampen this industry. Last week’s column looked at the acute meltdown of Taste, and we now review how three other players in the sector are also taking strain. Spur’s latest trading update was especially worrying, as its most recent strong growth vector, RocoMamas, has ground to a halt. The upmarket Hussar Grill has fared better than its other brands. Small and medium-cap specialist analyst Anthony Clark of Small Talk Daily Research says the acquisitions of RocoMamas and Hussar were “inspired deals and reinvigorated the business”, but tough times have taken their toll. “Spur itself was plodding along as a mid-LSM family food chain until the social media storm hit it last year [2018] and knocked it for [a] six. Then the economy, followed by load shedding in Gauteng and now nationally, have hit it and many oth...

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