Nightcap reports 'fantastic half year' results

By Nikkie Thatcher contact

- Last updated on GMT

Multiple operator: Nightcap boss Sarah Willingham lauded her teams' response to the Government's Plan B measures just before Christmas 2021 (image credit: Nicky Johnston)
Multiple operator: Nightcap boss Sarah Willingham lauded her teams' response to the Government's Plan B measures just before Christmas 2021 (image credit: Nicky Johnston)

Related tags: Multi-site pub operators, Nightcap, Finance, Property

Multiple operator Nightcap has announced reported revenues for the half year to 26 December 2021 rose by more than 700% from £2m.

The business, which acquired Barrio Familia​ last year, also revealed like-for-like revenue growth of almost a quarter (24.8%) for the nine weeks ending 27 February 2022, compared to the same period in 2020 and a similar percentage (24.6%) against the same time frame in 2019.

Nightcap reported its organic growth was progressing well with three new openings, four refurbishments and one additional new lease completed in the period.

As of 26 December 2021, the group had unaudited cash resources of about £9.4m and total legacy bank borrowings of approximately £6m, giving a net cash position of £3.4m (excluding lease liabilities).

The company has £4.7m of legacy bank borrowings from its previous acquisitions and in the period, assumed a further £1.3m of debt from the purchase of Barrio Familia on long-term favourable terms.

Significant growth first steps

Nightcap CEO Sarah Willingham said: “Nightcap has had a fantastic half year. We have taken the first steps in significantly growing our family bars, both by adding the Barrio Familia Group in November 2021 and by opening three more The Cocktail Clubs in Bristol, Reading and London. We finished the calendar year with 27 top quality, late-night bars.

“This half year has been spent focusing on getting the team the group ready for the fast and sustainable growth we have planned for 2022 and beyond.

“With the team now in place to execute Nightcap’s strategy, we see continued excellent opportunities in the property market with more than 24 sites in legal negotiations​ or under offer across several of our brands, in addition to the three new bars we have already announced for Cardiff and Exeter.

“Importantly, out of this portfolio of sites, not a single property premium has been paid or offered to date. We can look forward to the growth of our brilliant brands across the UK with confidence during the 2022 calendar year.”

Willingham went on to outline the company’s financial results against pre-pandemic numbers.

She added: “At the same time, we have delivered incredible numbers throughout the core estate with reported revenue increasing by more than 700% compared to the last year (first half of 2020), primarily due to The Adventure Bar Group acquisition​ and a 300% increase compared to the same period in 2019.

“The like-for-like revenue growth of 22.4% (compared to the first half of 2019) demonstrates through excellent management and motivated, happy teams, we have been able to respond to the pent-up demand from our customers, while significantly growing the underlying businesses.”

She highlighted how the company traded in light of the Government’s Plan B announcement just before Christmas last year.

Festive period performance

“It is worth noting out of our 27 bars, only 19 (70%) traded for the whole 26-week period. Five sites were added through the acquisition of the Barrio Familia Group on 21 November 2021 (19%) and a further three sites (11%) opened under The Cocktail Club brand, also in November 2021,” Willingham said.

“All of this was despite the Government’s Plan B guidelines, introduced in December 2021 that impacted the final few weeks of the 26-week period.

“Up until the two weeks before Christmas, for the 24 weeks ending 12 December 2021, we achieved a 28.3% increase on a like-for-like basis against the same period in 2019.

“Our team was able to reschedule more than 70% of the initially cancelled Christmas bookings into our third quarter (January 2022 to March 2022) and because of their flexibility and customer care, we are already seeing bookings and re-bookings for Christmas 2022.

“This performance shows we can trade strongly with or without Covid restrictions and our guests and their demographics are resilient and keen to get out and socialise.”

Related topics: MA Leaders Club

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