Phillips Fox acted for Domino’s Pizza Australia New Zealand Limited on its $31.5 million expansion into Europe, which involved the acquisition of existing pizza operations in France, the Netherlands and Belgium from the US owner of the Domino’s brand.
Lead partner for the firm, Eugene Fung, said the transaction included the typical issues of a cross border deal, and required the synthesis of legal issues in the US, Australia and the European jurisdictions. He said this added to the challenge of the transaction, but also added to the learning acquired from it. Partners Martin McEneiry and Tony Conaghan also worked on the deal.
Although Phillips Fox has an association with DLA Piper, conflicts of interest meant that firm was unable to act on this transaction, so Clifford Chance advised on the European aspects.
Domino’s listed on the Australian Stock Exchange last year following the acquisition of operations in New Zealand. Since then it has focused on expanding in Victoria and looking at other options for the expansion of its operations.
Fung said the company had looked at options both inside and outside the pizza business, but concluded that the Domino’s business was still its best option. Its search led it to the new markets in Europe.
Domino’s Australia New Zealand paid $14.8 million for the markets and under the deal with the vendor, has undertaken to spend an additional $16.7 million to develop those markets. The expansion will provide a platform for additional growth for Domino’s and the company predicts the new markets could potentially support more than 1,000 new stores on top of its existing operations in Australia and New Zealand.