Shares in Cooks Global Foods jump 13% on Esquires expansion plans in Middle East

Cooks Global Foods 12-month price history (NZX.com)

Shares in Cooks Global Foods [NZX: CGF], which has the global franchise rights for Esquires Coffee Houses outside of New Zealand, Australia and Canada, jumped 13 percent after the company detailed expansion plans for the coffee chain in the Middle East.

Cooks expects its first Esquires outlets to open in Oman and Qatar within the next six months after signing a master franchise agreement for the countries with Al Barzah Restaurant Management, the Auckland-based company said in a statement.

The agreement adds to Esquires franchise agreements covering 16 stores in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates, the company said. Cooks says it has commitments for more than 80 Esquires coffee houses across the Arab economic alliance countries, where it sees potential in high levels of disposal income and economic growth.

Shares in Cooks, which are listed on the small cap NZAX market, rose 2 cents to 17 cents as a result of four trades in which 116,000 shares changed hands.

Stuart Deeks, co-founder of Esquires in New Zealand, has been sounding out further growth opportunities for the business in India, Turkey, Romania, Egypt, Singapore, Malaysia, the UK, Ireland and Canada, the company said.

Separately, Cooks said it has bought the Design Environments business which designs interiors for its coffee chains, for an undisclosed sum in cash.

(BusinessDesk)

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