High street casual dining chains have “no future” after the coronavirus, says the entrepreneur who turned PizzaExpress into the UK’s first mid-market restaurant chain.

Hugh Osmond, who with fellow entrepreneur Luke Johnson took PizzaExpress public and expanded the chain to more than 200 sites during the 1990s, said private equity firms buying casual dining businesses at risk of bankruptcy because of the Covid-19 crisis “fail to understand the business they are acquiring”.

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