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Tue 25th Apr 2017 - City Pub Company reports significant growth in turnover and Ebitda, pays maiden dividend
City Pub Company reports significant growth in turnover and Ebitda, pays maiden dividend: Independent pub operator City Pub Company has reported a significant growth in turnover and Ebitda and paid its maiden dividend. Chairman Clive Watson told Propel the company expects to raise between £15m and £20m through its planned Alternative Investment Market (AIM) listing on the London Stock Exchange towards the end of 2017, which would give it the firepower to grow to a 50-strong estate during the next two to three years. The company, which owns and operates 32 pubs in southern England, saw turnover increase 36.6% to £27.4m for the year ending 31 December 2016, compared with £20.1m the previous year. Company Ebitda grew 43.4% to £4.1m, compared with £2.9m the year before. Operating profit was up 61.5% to £2.4m, compared with £1.5m the previous year. It paid a maiden dividend of 1.5p. The company, which said it was on track to be operating 35 pubs by the time it seeks the AIM listing, continued to make significant progress throughout the year acquiring seven pubs with a further three acquisitions after year-end. Watson said the focus would continue to be on southern England and the company would continue to build its pipeline two or three sites at a time. He added: “We will find the right pubs in the right cities that suit our business. It’s not a numbers game – it’s about having quality pubs – but 50 is a very realistic figure.” During 2016 the company also introduced a profit-share scheme, where each eligible employee was rewarded with a payment in excess of £500 as a result of the company’s strong financial performance. Watson said: “2016 was a fantastic year for the business, during which we expanded our high-quality estate and significantly increased revenue and company Ebitda. Paying our maiden dividend is another milestone and demonstrates the progress made and our strong financial performance. Importantly, we now have the infrastructure in place to scale and manage an estate in excess of 50 pubs in the coming years, and while there are a number of headwinds in the sector, our exceptional growth will more than mitigate any cost impact. 2017 has started strongly and the company continues to trade in line with our expectations. We have a pipeline of high-quality acquisitions ahead and look forward to the future with real confidence.”

Be At One partners with Purple to capture customer insights and data through Wi-Fi: Be At One, the specialist cocktail bar group, is capturing detailed customer insights and data from its guest Wi-Fi following a partnership with Pernod Ricard and Purple, the intelligent spaces company. Be At One, which operates 31 sites across the UK, has upgraded its in-bar Wi-Fi so its head office team and key partner Pernod Ricard can capture analytics about customers while they use an efficient, secure Wi-Fi connection. The insights will be used to determine music played in the bars, happy-hour timings and what sort of promotions to offer. The platform also enables the marketing team to distribute communications, alerts and promotions in real-time. Purple is also helping the brand refresh its customer relationship management database, increase feedback and grow app downloads. Since Purple went live across Be At One’s London sites in December, 15,000 lines of data have been collected, with app downloads and survey responses also increasing. The platform is now live across the entire estate. Be At One digital marketing manager Patrick Hook said: “Before Purple, we had a vague idea of the type of people visiting each individual bar but now have a complete and detailed overview of the whole estate. Having such a wealth of insights into our customers puts us at a great advantage. These results will help mould our marketing activity and influence key business decisions. The analytics also enable Pernod Ricard to determine what offers to launch, our menu designs and which drinks to push at certain periods.” Purple chief executive Gavin Wheeldon added: “It demonstrates clearly how wide-reaching the return on investment can be for Be At One’s Wi-Fi investment.”

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