MA Leaders Club

Purchase agreed: the Wiremill, near Lingfield in Surrey has been sold the Hall & Woodhouse

Yummy rebrands and sells 'iconic' site

By Nikkie Thatcher

Multi-site operator Yummy Pubs has sold lakeside site the Wiremill, near Lingfield in Surrey to brewer and pub company Hall & Woodhouse for an undisclosed sum.

A success born in the pandemic: Nightcap co-founder and chief executive Sarah Willingham (credit: Nicky Johnston)

big interview

BIG INTERVIEW: There’s always time for a Nightcap

By Gary Lloyd

While most businesses hit the wall during the pandemic, Sarah Willingham saw there was a pent-up demand for socialising in hospitality together with a power shift towards tenants from landlords and decided to form Nightcap to get the party started.

Five alive: the Bristol opening for Tonight Josephine brings its site total to five

Not Tonight Josephine, it’s Tonight Sophie

By Gary Lloyd

A new Tonight Josephine bar that opened on Friday 30 September has been renamed Tonight Sophie after a social media competition to rebrand the bar in the name of a woman was won by resident Sophie Turner.

The right partner: co-founder and chief executive Mark Grunnell now operates 208 sites


Why finding the right funding partner is essential

By Mark Grunnell, co-founder and CEO of Red Oak Taverns

I launched Red Oak Taverns 11 years ago with my co-founder, Aaron Brown and, since then, we’ve grown our portfolio to 208 pubs.

Improving situation: City Pub Group chairman Clive Watson and new site Oyster House

City Pub Group trade better than pre-pandemic

By Gary Lloyd

Multiple operator City Pub Group has announced it is trading better than it did pre-pandemic in 2019, according to its results for the six months ended 26 June 2022.

Event details: the MA Leaders Club conference took place at Komedia in Brighton on Thursday 15 September

MA Leaders club

Consumers want honesty from operators about rising costs

By Nikkie Thatcher

Some 20% of consumers felt strongly that venue owners should be open and honest about rising costs to soften the blow and extend consumers’ understanding of the challenges the sector is facing, a survey has found.

Jackpot: Free tacos if vouchers found

Revolution to give away 1,800 tacos

By Amelie Maurice-Jones

Revolución de Cuba, a subset of Revolution Bars Group, has pledged to give away 1,800 free tacos as part of a national treasure hunt celebrating the launch of its new food menu.

New national service: sector deserves more respect and should be seen as career option (Pictured: Tanya Wicks (left), Clive Price (centre) and MA news editor Nikkie Thatcher (right) at MA Leaders Brighton)

Hospitality should be 'new national service'

By Rebecca Weller

Hospitality should be a “new national service” as the sector offers varied experiences across all skill levels, according to Barons Pub Company managing director Clive Price.

Putting money in the bin: sustainability and food waste management could be solution to ease energy crisis (Credit:Getty/libin jose)

Sustainability 'solution to crippling overheads'

By Rebecca Weller

Now is not the time for operators to let sustainability fall away and could help ease the impact of the energy crisis, according to Net Zero Now executive director Simon Heppner.

Operator caution: BrewDog boss James Watt warned the energy crisis could cause more business casualties than the pandemic

BrewDog ‘no choice but to close 6 bars’

By Nikkie Thatcher

James Watt, co-founder and CEO of BrewDog, has revealed the company closed six of its bars due to rocketing energy costs and has blasted the Government as "clueless".

Business growth: Rekom UK chief executive Peter Marks previously said the company was moving forward with its strategy of cluster openings

Rekom to open UK’s first Proud Mary pub

By Shwetali Sapte, MCA

Rekom will open as the UK’s first Proud Mary pub at the end of October after having acquired the former Yard Bar on Cardiff’s St Mary’s Street.

North-east bound: The Botanist menu includes hanging kebabs, recycled banana and ginger cocktails and vegan choices

North-east opening for The Botanist

By Gary Lloyd

Multiple operator New World Trading Company (NWTC) is set to launch a new site for its brand The Botanist in Sunderland.

Company initiative: the Blueprint was first unveiled in May this year and outlined the BrewDog's profit share scheme

BrewDog pays out over £300k in Blueprint bonus

By Nikkie Thatcher

Scottish brewer and multi-site operator BrewDog has revealed it has paid the first of its new Blueprint bonus profit share scheme to more than 1,700 bar staff.

Portfolio growth: the Engine Room in Ashton-under-Lyme was acquired from City Pub Group

Amber Taverns acquires three new sites

By Finn Scott-Delany, MCA

Amber Taverns has completed on three new sites, in Ashton-under-Lyne, Peterlee and Shrewsbury, managing director James Baer has told MCA.

Huge contribution: Steven Kenee to step down as Oakman Group chief investment officer (Pictured: Steven Kenee with Peter Borg-Neal)

Steven Kenee to leave Oakman Group

By Gary Lloyd

Steven Kenee is to leave his role as chief investment officer at Oakman Group. Kenee joined Oakman three years ago from Downing where he had grown to admire the company while managing Downing’s investment into the business.

Rising costs: Bath Pub Company managing director Joe Cussens says there is no help with ever-increasing energy prices

Bath Pub Company lfl revenue up 34% v 2019

By Gary Lloyd

Bath-based pub operator The Bath Pub Company has reported a 34% increase in like-for-like (lfl) revenue in the first half of 2022 versus the same period in pre-pandemic trading in 2019.

Delighted: Nightcap chief executive Sarah Willingham (credit: Nicky Johnston)

Nightcap announces 23.6% revenue increase

By Gary Lloyd

Nightcap, the owner of The Cocktail Club, the Adventure Bar Group and the Barrio Familia group of bars, has reported a 23.6% like-for-like revenue increase for the final 13 weeks of its financial year, ended 3 July 2022.

Company portfolio: Red Oak Taverns now operates 208 sites across the UK, which are predominantly leased and tenanted

Red Oak secures £110m debt facility

By Nikkie Thatcher

Multi-site operator Red Oak Taverns has secured a six year £110m whole loan arranged by Excellion Capital to push forward with the group’s growth plans.

Company growth: Nightcap is looking to expand its portfolio further

Nightcap launches Bar Academy to aid staff retention

By Nikkie Thatcher

Multiple operator Nightcap has announced the launch of its Bar Academy – a dedicated training hub – alongside a new opening of the group’s Tonight Josephine brand in Bristol.

Company strategy: Mark Robson (right) said there were plans for all New Dawn Pubs to 'lead the way in design and authenticity'

Red Mist founders exit to create new pub company

By Ed Bedington

The founders of Red Mist have exited the business to set up a new pub company New Dawn Pubs, taking four of the former Red Mist sites and are in the process of acquiring a fifth.

Sales rising: Fuller's has opened a landside site at Heathrow's Terminal 2

Fuller’s buoyed by 3% sales boost

By Gary Lloyd

London-based pub operator Fuller, Smith & Turner (Fuller’s) has announced total sales are up 3% on pre-pandemic levels and it has three sites in the pipeline, in its latest trading update.

Record year: Nick Collins and Alex Reilley (right) of Loungers

Loungers plans to open ‘at least’ 500 sites

By Gary Lloyd

All-day bar-restaurant brand Loungers said it expects to open at least 500 sites across its Lounge and Cosy Club brands, after reporting a record year of financial and operational progress.

Financial input discussion: Peter Borg-Neal (right) at the Pub Conference with MCA editor Finn Scott-Delany

Oakman contemplates minority stake sell-off

By Finn Scott-Delany

Oakman Group is in talks with private equity groups to put more cash in the balance sheet and accelerate its expansion plans, MCA’s Pub Conference has heard.

What's in the news 1 July

The MA's Review of the Week

'Tax relief can help hospitality businesses to reinvest'

By Ed Bedington

Owner of the Veeno wine bar business, Rodrigue Trouillet shared his thoughts on the weeks news with the MA's Ed Bedington, from tax relief to the ongoing recruitment challenges.


Inn Collection Group relocates HQ

By Amelie Maurice-Jones

Northern pubco the Inn Collection Group has relocated its head office to larger premises in Newcastle to accommodate ongoing growth across its operations.

What's in the news 17 June?

The MA's Review of the Week

‘Deliveroo, over my dead body’

By Ed Bedington

Hospitality and experience will be key in the fight for the consumer spend according to Sarah Weir as she discusses the events of the week and the market challenges with the MA's Ed Bedington.

Revolution update: renovated bars, such as its Cheltenham site, are proving popular with customers

Revolution Bars Group confident in trading update

By Gary Lloyd

Multiple operator Revolution Bars Group has announced it is confident of delivering EBITDA results “slightly ahead” of market expectations that currently stand at £10m.

Southern base: MA Leaders Club members will be hitting the streets of Brighton in September (image: Getty/Abstract Aerial Art)

MA Leaders Club

MA Leaders September location revealed

By Nikkie Thatcher

The Morning Advertiser can now announce the MA Leaders Club event in September will be taking place in Brighton.

Growth reflects quality on offer: City Pub Group executive chairman Clive Watson

City Pub Group like-for-like sales up 5% on 2019

By Gary Lloyd

Multiple operator City Pub Group has said its like-for-like sales have continued to strengthen faster than predicted as its May 2022 figures are 5% ahead of the same period in 2019.