A source within Hakkasan met with me this past weekend outside their offices, and revealed a claim that they have stopped the merger process with SBE after what the source claimed was a “serious financial issue.”
I want to stress this is so far a rumor, but with a copy of the financial statements given to me, they seem to be an interesting rumor. Especially since SBE/Hakkasan promised the merger would be done by the start of the summer, and months later it’s still not even close to completing.
However, I must make clear (partially for legal reasons) that these are rumors and even the most difficult mergers sometime happen after long delays. Hakkasan doesn’t at this point have much of a choice, except to sell to SBE… and SBE really wants Hakkasan to be a jewel in their crown.
An SBE spokesperson issued the following statement, regarding the merger, this month: “SBE remains in negotiations to complete a financial transaction in which SBE’s and Hakkasan’s formidable hospitality assets are combined into one company. We are looking forward to completing the transaction to accelerate our already robust expansion.”
Also, their purchase of Morgan’s hotel group for $82 million took two years.