Satisfying Londoners’ tastes for French pastries and bread has been good business for this bakery chain. Paul started as a patisserie in France in 1889 and continues to operate internationally, but after a previous failed attempt to establish the brand in Britain, chief executive David Belhassen led a buyout of the French owners in 2005 and relaunched the business. Today the company operates 22 shops selling sandwiches and coffee in addition to crusty French bread and pastries, and has plans to expand out of London. Sales grew 56% a year from £5m in 2005 to £18.9m in 2008.
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