Times LIVE:

Rumours that Famous Brands is head-hunting staff from Nando’s to build its flame-grilled peri-peri chicken franchise Giramundo is “absolute rubbish”, Kevin Hedderwick, chief executive of Famous Brands, said this week.

“It is absolutely inaccurate. We have structures in place that are working on Giramundo; they are all staff who were advanced from within,” Hedderwick said. The founder also remained on board as a 49% partner, he said.

Famous Brands has been struggling to enter the fast-food chicken market, which makes up about 45% of SA’s total fast-food industry.

Last month it bought 51% of Giramundo, a small, family-owned chain, with an outlet and production facility in Bramley and three container outlets in Alexandra, Tembisa and Soweto in Gauteng. Rumours that Famous Brands had hired two Nando’s executives to kick-start its expansion in the chicken business emerged this week.