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Fri 7th Aug 2015 - Former Peach executives launch new £5m gastro-pub company
Former Peach executives launch new £5m gastro-pub company: A new gastro-pub company Epic Pubs will launch its first site later this month – with three more lined up to open. The company, led by former Peach Pub Company partner Andrew Coath, has acquired the freehold of The Golden Ball, an independent pub, in Maidenhead, Berkshire, which is due to open on Friday, 21 August following a £1.1m investment. Epic, which has secured EIS-funding of more than £5m, will follow that by opening sites in Haslemere, Surrey, Towcester, Northamptonshire; and in Essex – all freehold. Coath, who was a partner at Peach Pubs for more than ten years, told Propel that The Golden Ball, which is situated within a National Trust area, was the “ideal market” for the company’s first gastro-pub. He said: “We are very pleased to get this venture off the ground. The trade levels at The Golden Ball were great and this is an opportunity for us to move it forward because there is so much potential in the property. There are a lot of food and drink offers in the Maidenhead area but we are bringing something different to the market and we will be serving quality food in a stand-out environment.” The Golden Ball is currently being refurbished after contracts were exchanged earlier this week and the venue will create 20 jobs. Coath, who is working with fellow experienced gastro-pub operators Jonathon Taylor, who also worked at Peach, Mark Austin and Wendy Twiddy, said the company was due to exchange contracts next week on the Halsemere site, which is set to open in early October. It has also acquired a Georgian residential property, which was once a Saxon inn, in the centre of Towcester and is investing £1.1m converting the building into a gastro-pub set to open in early November. Epic is also in the process of securing an independent pub in Essex that it hopes to open in February next year. Coath said he expected the company to continue expanding with further sites in the M25 corridor – probably on a leasehold basis. He added: “We are very careful on site selection and careful on the demographics of an area but we are not stopping at four. We are doing freehold first and looking into leasehold because there are more sites available on the market.”

Inflexion Private Equity lead race to buy YO! Sushi: Inflexion Private Equity, the owner of the fashion chain Jack Wills, is in talks to buy YO! Sushi, the UK’s biggest Japanese restaurant group, for about £100m, Sky News has reported. A deal between Inflexion and Quilvest, YO! Sushi’s current owner, is not yet certain and could fall apart, Sky reported. However, the private equity firm is understood to have been given a period of exclusivity within which to negotiate a deal. It is said to have seen off competition from rival bidders which were reported to have included 3i, Morgan Stanley Private Equity and Mistral Equity Partners, a New York-based fund.
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