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Tue 26th Jan 2021 - Exclusive: Newly formed pub investment vehicle acquires majority stake in Red Mist Leisure
Exclusive – newly formed pub investment vehicle acquires majority stake in Red Mist Leisure: Red Lion Holdings (RLH), a newly formed pub investment vehicle led by ex-Busaba chief executive Jason Myers and sector investor David Ramsay, has acquired a majority stake in Red Mist Leisure, the south east-based pub group founded by Mark Robson and Mark Williams, Propel has learned. RLH said Red Mist’s senior management team and all staff would remain with the company. Red Mist, which was founded in 2004 by long-time friends Robson, Williams and Julian Clarke, currently operates ten pubs across Surrey and Hampshire, with sites including the Red Lion in Odiham; The Exchequer in Crookham Village; and The Queen’s Head, East Clandon. RLH said it was “highly committed to supporting Red Mist’s management team to develop and expand the business”, and will make further funds available for future freehold and site acquisitions. Myers told Propel that RLH has been created as a specialist hospitality investment group that invests in independent boutique pubs and inns, “utilising its expertise and shared services to support its investments”. Ramsay said the new investment vehicle has “very strong ambitions of bringing more groups to the Red Lion family, as well as continuing to acquire high-quality individual pub assets”. He said: “We believe there is an excellent opportunity for high-quality boutique pub companies to come together under our RLH umbrella to receive necessary support and funds to accelerate growth, and also benefit from economies of scale, back-office synergies and pooling expertise. We are working hard behind the scenes to support our brands to achieve this with excellent support from our partners.” Myers, who operates the two-strong Grosvenor Pubs & Inns with Ramsay, said: “We are delighted with the announcement today (Tuesday, 26 January) that we are bringing Red Mist into the RLH family, and we very much look forward to working closely with the leadership team. This acquisition was a long time in the making and it will benefit our colleagues, guests and future ambitions greatly. It’s a testimony to the dedication of all parties and stakeholders that we successfully completed the deal in a period of lockdown. We firmly believe the current market conditions will result in several exciting expansion opportunities, and this new structure and significant investment will put Red Mist [and RLH] in an excellent position to capitalise on these opportunities.” Robson, managing director of Red Mist Leisure said: “The investment announced today (Tuesday, 26 January) by RLH to acquire a majority share in our business is an exciting and very positive development for our company, our teams and our customers. I am so proud of what Red Mist has achieved since we started in 2004 and this new equity injection provides us with the capital to expand our business in the future. We are very excited to get the next chapter of our journey under way working as part of a larger, more experienced Red Lion family in the years ahead.” Neil Morgan at Christie & Co acted on behalf of Red Mist Leisure on the investment deal. Myers and Ramsay launched Grosvenor Pubs & Inns, which is backed by Downing LLP, in 2018. The company currently operates the Surrey-based sites The Kings Arms in Egham and The Cricketers on the Green in Pirbright.

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