As more and more successful consumer-facing Chinese brands get into the hands of foreign investors, a saga of mixed fortunes and bittersweet experiences is unfolding across the country. The famous hot pot restaurant chain Little Sheep is a classic case study. There was a time, not very long ago, when January-February, China’s coldest period of the year, would see Chinese making a beeline for hot pot. And the ultimate winter dining experience for many was a visit to Little Sheep, whose Mongolian hot pot was the most popular item on its menu…Full Article: China Daily Feb 2016

Key Points

  • Little Sheep’s primary hot pot restaurant rivals are Haidilao Hot Pot and Xiabu Xiabu.
  • In 2004, Little Sheep Group had 721 hot pot restaurants in China.

ChinaAg Comments

  • As of 2015, Little Sheep had 202 restaurant outlets. Meanwhile, Xiao Wei Yang hotpot, a hotpot restaurant chain from Baotou and competitor of Little Sheep, reportedly has more than 600 outlets.
  • In February 2012, Yum Brands acquired Little Sheep and delisted the restaurant chain from the Hong Kong Stock exchange.
  • In March 2009, 3i Group divests its 11.32% stake in Little Sheep to Yum! Brands Inc. (e.g. KFC, Pizza Hut).
  • In June 2008, Little Sheep went public in Hong Kong in 2008, valued slightly above US$420 million
  • In June 2006, 3i Group (London-based private equity firm) invests a $20 million in Little Sheep.
  • Founded in 1999 in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, Little Sheep is a hot pot restaurant chain. The company also deals in Little Sheep seasonings, processing and marketing of special meat products.

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