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  • Joburg couple move to US and open several restaurants copying SA brands [pics]
    Posted by on Mar 13th, 2015

    Ya hey…it’s not uncommon to find knock-off clothing coming from China where famous brands are copied with not-so-subtle name changes hey, but it doesn’t happen in the restaurant business very often. Well leave it to a South African couple who have moved to the US and started a few restaurants with names and menus pretty much a complete rip-off of well known SA establishments. It all started when Ocean Basket found out that there is a restaurant in the US with the exact same name and menu so they opened a case of stolen identity. Further investigation revealed that the company, MG Food Services Inc. is owned by a Johannesburg couple who moved to California in 2013. A quick look at their website and it’s very clearly they have a few restaurants that closely resemble Nando’s, Mugg and Bean and Ocean Basket.

    This from their website.

    Didn’t even bother changing the name for Ocean Basket. At least they went with Jay’s Peri Peri chicken and the Coffee Lounge for their Nando’s and Mugg & Bean effort. They did leave “M and B” in the logo for the latter though.

    Oh and there’s also that Fruitiser offering which a tad similar to Appletiser no? They threw in the ‘soda’ font from Soda Stream as well for extra points.

    Now lets have a quick look at their Jay’s Peri Peri menu.

    And now the official Nando’s menu.

    Mmmmmmm.

    This from Fin24.

    “According to an April 2014 report in local newspaper Visalia Times-Delta, the new restaurant was founded by MG Food Services, led by Gadija Ghaniem and her husband Maurice, who moved from Johannesburg to California in 2013.

    According to the report they also opened Jay’s Flame Grilled Peri Peri Chicken (whose emblem originally closely resembled Nando’s rooster) and a coffee shop called Mugs & Beans.” [Fin 24]

    Ocean Basket is investigating a case of stolen identity.

    Jaco says:
    March 03, 2015 at 9:00 am

    It’s not too far off from what Woolworths and J Crew did, is it?

    March 03, 2015 at 9:00 am

    Oh, oh dear. Actually, it’s not a horrible idea, but one wonders why they got so sloppy with the Ocean Basket copy. Was it a case of simply ‘fuck it’, South Africans don’t have good Internet so they’ll never learn about our wonderful little venture perhaps? :)

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