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Mon 8th Nov 2021 - Exclusive: Portobello buys freehold portfolio, Daisy Green launches £2m crowdfund
Exclusive – Portobello acquires freehold pub portfolio, plans 80-strong business: Portobello Starboard, a new acquisition platform backed by private equity firm Zetland Capital and operated by Portobello Brewery, has acquired 12 freehold pubs, located across the London villages and suburbs, as part of plans to build a business with more than 80 pubs, Propel has learned. The pubs have been acquired from various entities, backed by funds managed by investment manager Downing. Portobello Brewery, the pub operating company, which is chaired by Mark Crowther, has been managing the sites for the past year. Zetland Capital, which typically makes investments in the range of €10m (£8.6m) to €50m (£42.9m), is providing equity funding for the acquisition and will provide further financial support, as the business looks to grow through acquisitions across London and the south of England. The sites include the flagship Westow House in Crystal Palace, which has recently added 22 en-suite bedrooms, along with other locations including Forest Gate, Peckham, New Cross, Sutton and Brixton. Sharon Hayward will join the business as chief financial officer of the pubs on completion of the deal. Crowther said: “We are delighted to have completed this acquisition and to partner with Zetland Capital. Zetland’s backing will enable us to invest in these great pubs and our fantastic teams, supporting the recovery and to acquire further pubs in the south of England.” Ahmed Hamdani, managing partner at Zetland, added: “We are excited to have made this acquisition of a high quality and well-located portfolio of pubs. We are partnering with a highly experienced team, led by Mark, and will back it with substantial investment, to grow Portobello into one of the leading pub businesses in southern England.” Downing was advised by Sapient Corporate Finance. The 12 pubs are the Effra Social, Brixton; Royal Albert, New Cross; Knowles, Norwood; John the Unicorn, Peckham; Walker Briggs, Crystal Palace; Forest Tavern, Forest Gate; Old Red Lion, Kennington; Westow House, Crystal Palace; GPO, Eltham; Sylvan Post, Forest Hill; Pratts and Payne, Streatham; and Shinner & Sudtone, Sutton. The 15-strong Portobello Brewery, which is led by managing director Richard Stringer, recently opened its first pub outside of London, the Hart House in the Hampshire commuter town of Fleet. Ex-We Are Bar chief executive Stringer joined Portabello in 2019 as managing director of its pubs business. In 2019, it acquired the Hack & Hop in the City of London for its second site only seven weeks after completing on its first venue, King & Co in Clapham.

Exclusive – Daisy Green launches £2m crowdfund, already raised £1.7m: Australia-inspired restaurant, bar and coffee group Daisy Green is today (Monday, 8 November) launching a crowdfunding to raise circa £2m to continue expansion across the capital, Propel has learned. The 11-strong business, which is led by Prue Freeman, had an initial target of £1m for the fundraising that will go live on Seedrs this morning. This has been extended with more than £1.7m raised in pre commitments over the weekend. The company said its revenues were up 67% on pre-pandemic levels, achieving run rate revenues and site Ebitda of more than £15m and £4.4m respectively. The business has a £28m pre-money valuation based on eight times run rate on group Ebitda run rate of £3.5m. It is targeting revenue of circa £36m by full year 2025 and group Ebitda of £5m. Freeman told Propel the business was hoping to open a further four sites in the capital next year – in Zone 1 and Zone 2, and had been buoyed by the success of its latest opening – Bondi Green at Paddington canal side. The site features an in-house bakery and rooftop dining. Over the last decade the business said it has consistently grown at more than 30% per annum to include sites such as Darcie and May Green, the 50-metre long canal boats in Paddington. Freeman said: “We’re astounded by the support that we’ve received for Daisy over the last 18 months. To emerge from the pandemic bigger, stronger and more in demand than ever gives us confidence in our ambitious expansion plans.” 

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