MUMBAI, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Hardcastle Restaurants, master
franchisee for south and west India operations of burger chain
McDonald's Corp, said it will merge with its parent
Westlife Development Ltd.
After the merger, the parent plans to increase McDonald's
retail footprint to strengthen its presence in the existing
market and enter newer ones, Amit Jatia, vice-chairman of
Westlife Development, said in a statement on Friday.
Hardcastle will become a wholly owned unit of Bombay Stock
Exchange-listed Westlife, giving investors a chance to
participate in the growth of McDonald's in India.
Hardcastle, which operates 148 restaurants in India, has
been growing at a compounded annual growth rate of 22.3 percent
over the last three years.
Shares of Westlife, an illiquid stock, ended up 2 percent on
the BSE on Friday.