EXCLUSIVE: Portobello Starboard secures £40m from OakNorth Bank

By Rebecca Weller contact

- Last updated on GMT

Future potential: Portobello Starboard secures £40m from OakNorth Bank to expand by a further five acquisitions (Credit: Getty/Image Source)
Future potential: Portobello Starboard secures £40m from OakNorth Bank to expand by a further five acquisitions (Credit: Getty/Image Source)

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

Pub group Portobello Starboard, backed by private equity firm Zetland Capital, has secured £40m to expand its portfolio of pubs from OakNorth Bank.

With the loan from OakNorth bank, Zetland Capital, who were advised by Westfort Advisors, has planned to grow its estate of freehold pubs through five acquisitions across London and the south of England, starting with three sites in Brighton, East Sussex.

Portobello Starboard executive chairman Mark Crowther said: “We are delighted to have completed this acquisition and to partner with Zetland Capital.

Keep pubs thriving 

“Zetland’s backing will enable us to invest in these great pubs and our fantastic teams, supporting the recovery and to acquire further pubs in the south of England.

“Given the challenges pubs have faced over the last two years, there aren’t many lenders who would consider supporting the sector at the moment.

“However, through looking at the portfolio’s past performance, as well as taking a forward-look view of its future potential, OakNorth Bank was able to put together a facility which will keep these pubs thriving and enable us to further expand the portfolio.”

Portobello Starboards portfolio currently includes its flagship site at Westow House in Crystal Palace, London, which has recently added 22 en‐suite bedrooms, along with other locations including Effra Social in Brixton and Pratts & Payne in Streatham.

This comes as last month saw Portobello acquire​ six pubs, including five from multiple operator the City Pub Group.

Strong sponsor 

Furthermore, OakNorth senior director of debt finance Deepesh Thakrar confirmed exclusively to the Morning Advertiser​ the bank has planned to lend more than £3bn across multiple sectors in 2022, after lending £1.8bn to SME’s last year and £1.1bn in 2020.

OakNorth Bank senior director of debt finance Deepesh Thakrar said: “At OakNorth Bank, we don’t take a broad-brush approach when it comes to analysing a business.

“Even in challenged sectors, there will always be strong businesses, so we see this is as a good opportunity to support a strong sponsor with a portfolio of pubs in good locations, run by a well-regarded operator.”

Related topics: Rebuilding the Pub Sector

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