Pret a Manger buys EAT and plans convert stores into 'Veggie Prets'

Ben Chapman

Pret A Manger has bought EAT and plans to convert many of the chain's stores into "Veggie Prets".

The move is in response to growing consumer demand for more vegetarian and vegan options on the high street, Pret said on Wednesday.

Pret opened its first permanent vegetarian-only store in September 2016 and has since expanded to three further locations across London and Manchester. The acquisition of EAT is expected to "significantly accelerate" the growth of this brand, Pret said.

Clive Schlee, chief executive of Pret said: “The purpose of this deal is to serve a growing demand of vegetarian and vegan customers who want delicious, high quality food and drink options. We have been developing the Veggie Pret concept for over two years and we now have four hugely successful shops across London and Manchester. The acquisition of the EAT estate is a wonderful opportunity to turbo charge the development of Veggie Pret and put significant resources behind it.”

Andrew Walker, chief executive of EAT said: “EAT’s passionate and talented team are what make the business; their commitment to providing our customers with great food and excellent service is at the heart of the company’s outstanding recent performance. I am delighted that their efforts have been recognised through this transaction. It has been a privilege to lead EAT for the past 3 years, and I believe this acquisition creates new opportunities for employees and customers alike.”