Bain's Skylark

Skylark turns into a bird of prey

The Bain-backed family diner has super-size plans to cope with rising costs in Japan.

Skylark, backed by private equity firm Bain Capital, is flexing its purchasing power, acquiring competitors and cutting costs to cope with the falling number of people dining out in Japan.

The family-friendly restaurant chain, fresh from its $611 million IPO in Tokyo, is swooping on small family-owned restaurants struggling with succession planning.

“There is consolidation going on and we plan to participate in that,” said Skylark’s chairman Ralph Alvarez in an interview with FinanceAsia.

Founded in 1962 Skylark is already Japan’s biggest diner by number of restaurants and it hopes to leverage its bulk purchasing power to lower costs and undercut...

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