Craft Union to continue growth after reaching 500 pubs

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Future look: Craft Union operations director Frazer Grimbleby outlines the company's plans
Future look: Craft Union operations director Frazer Grimbleby outlines the company's plans

Related tags Multi-site pub operators Pubco + head office London

Craft Union is planning to expand its estate further as it marks a milestone opening in its portfolio.

The Stonegate Group-owned company, which was acquired in 2020, has now opened some 500 sites.

The Morning Advertiser ​spoke with operations director Frazer Grimbleby at the Blue Anchor in Bermondsey last week (Friday 31 March) following the business marking the milestone.

Grimbleby reflected on when the company started some eight years ago and outlined how it got to where it is now.

Core values

He said: “Going back to 2015, when we first founded the business, we started without a pub. We started with what we wanted to create – our philosophy, our vision of being the leading scale, operator of wet-led, community, pubs.

“Our philosophy was all around putting well-invested pubs back in the heart of their communities and having those pubs supported by a local hero, which was our operator.

“We agreed what our values would be alongside community with diversity, honesty, humour, and win with win being central to everything we do.

“We wanted to invest, revitalise and put those pubs back into the heart of communities and stop them being sold, or developed into something else., ensuring the community pub could be reinvigorated, could be sustainable and could be there for the future, for future generations."

Aspiration and ambition

He added: “That's what we did. We've got an aspiration and ambition to be able to develop those pubs and developing the pipeline that would get us to 500 one day and we set off on that milestone.”

From 2015 to now, the business is planning to continue its estate expansion moving forward and keep ensuring its pubs remain at the heart of their communities.

“Our ambition now is to continue growing. We're in such a great position now having joined forces with Stonegate, through the support and the investment of TDR, we've never been in a stronger position now through the help support, guidance structure, Stonegate has been able to give us to really create that platform now that can grow,” Grimbleby said.

Related topics Stonegate Group

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