Leon plans to open first US restaurants in 2017 after £25m cash injection from Swiss investors

The healthy fast food chain currently operates 45 outlets in the UK and two in the Netherlands

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The Independent Online

Fast food chain Leon is planning to open its first US outlets after securing a new £25m investment.

Leon, which currently operates 45 outlets in the UK and two in the Netherlands, received a cash injection from Swiss private equity firm Spice, which – alongside co-founder and chief executive John Vincent and long-term investor Active - will now hold a majority stake in the company.

It plans to open its first US restaurants in the second half of 2017.

Mr Vincent said Leon aims to become the world’s leading natural fast food company.

"We are fortunate to have been approached by many potential partners,” he said

He said that the decision to say yes to Spice was down to his “high regard” for the GP Investments, which manages Spice.

“I am also delighted that Active, our existing investor who has been so helpful to our growth, is participating in this fundraising too”, he added.

Fersen Lambranho, member of the board of directors of Spice and Chairman of GP Investments described Leon as “disruptive” fast-food model that was born in the UK but has “immense potential” to become global.

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