Meanwhile, a £5.3m loss before taxation from last year has been turned into a £238,000 profit before taxation this year.
However, the company has said it will slow down its new site openings plans during its current financial year while economic headwinds continue to hit the UK.
Group chief executive Sarah Willingham said of the results for the 53 weeks ended 3 July 2022: “I am extremely proud to present these excellent audited results. Our year has been eventful, fun and, at all times, rewarding. During the year, the number of bars we operated increased from 19 to 31 and this reflects our strong growth, driven by both new openings and acquisitions.”
Brand definition exciting
She continued: “Going from £6m to £36m of revenue and £0.2m to £3.3m of adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation) is impressive growth but what excites me the most is that we have defined our brands and fine-tuned their business models to optimise the rollout of the individual brands.
“We have opened several more sites post-year-end, taking the total amount of opened bars to 36 and while there are a growing number of outstanding sites available to us on increasingly advantageous terms, build costs have continued to increase and trading in the first 13 weeks of the new financial year (period to 2 October 2022) has been adversely impacted by record warm weather, train strikes and the cost-of-living crisis.
“With the uncertainty in the economic climate in mind, we will slow down our expansion plans of new site openings during the current financial year. Our focus will be to maximise returns from our existing and newly opened sites and then continue our roll out programme as market conditions improve.”
Nightcap chairman Gareth Edwards said Nightcap’s focus continues to be on acquisition and organic growth, with The Cocktail Club opening a total of seven new sites since 2021, the Adventure Bar Group growing by two new sites and Barrio Familia adding five sites.
Strong bank facilities
Willingham added trade in the first 13 weeks of the new financial year (period to 2 October 2022) has been adversely impacted by record warm weather, train strikes and the cost-of-living crisis. Warm weather over the summer (which reduced the demand for socialising in basement bars) was offset by record weeks at its outdoor venues, Bar Elba and Luna Springs, as customers took advantage of their outdoor spaces.
She said the group’s balance sheet remains strong with cash at bank at £6.8m with bank debt of £9.8m as of 2 October 2022. In addition to capital expenditure and pre-opening costs of £6.4m during the last financial year, a further £4.1m was invested in new site openings in the first quarter of FY2023, taking the total capital investment in its bars to £10.5m since the beginning of FY2022.
She said: “With a resilient and less affected Millennial/Gen Z customer base, we have been trading well given current economic issues facing the sector. Being well capitalised and profitable allows us to remain focused on leasing the best sites in the best locations across the country on the most advantageous terms, with less competition than during times of positive economic growth.
“We have acquired businesses on attractive terms and, as we move through the economic downcycle, we will continue to seek out great businesses with fundamentally attractive propositions who may have struggled with both the aftermath of Covid-19 trading restrictions and the current economic downturn.”