Baker Tilly’s Corporate Finance team has advised on the £6m investment by Piper in Hickory’s BBQ chain.

Hickory’s, which has a restaurant on The Groves in Chester, is the brainchild of Neil McDonnell, who founded the business in 2010 following extensive research into the smokehouse sector in the US.

The chain operates from large 5,000 sq ft sites and has three units in Chester, West Kirby and Rhos-on-Sea.

Hickory’s plans to open a further 10 restaurants over the next three to five years.

Hickory's Smokehouse on the Groves in Chester

The Baker Tilly team, led by James Wild and Rikesh Patel advised Neil McDonnell and the other Hickory’s shareholders throughout the deal process.

Simon Williams at Jolliffe & Co advised the company on the legal process.

James Wild, corporate finance director for Baker Tilly in Manchester, said: “Piper has a significant amount of expertise in the hospitality sector, and so pairing them with Hickory’s dynamic management team is a positive move that will help them achieve their ambitious growth plans for the future.”

Hickory’s founder Neil McDonnell said: “We are delighted to have selected Piper as our partner.

“I know we will benefit from their extensive knowledge and experience of the sector, and have already seen the value they can bring to bear so I am confident that together we will continue to build Hickory’s into a uniquely valuable business.”

Simon Williams, Partner at Jolliffe & Co in Chester, said: “We have worked with Neil for a number of years now and are thrilled that Piper’s involvement will be able to help take the business to the next level.”