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Mon 22nd Aug 2022 - NQ64 secures £2.5m from ThinCats to accelerate expansion
NQ64 secures £2.5m from ThinCats to accelerate expansion: NQ64, the immersive retro arcade bar concept backed by Imbiba, has received £2.5m in funding from ThinCats, in order to accelerate its openings pipeline. Founded in 2019 by Andy Haygarth and Matt Robson, NQ64 has grown from its original site in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, to nine retro gaming bars across the UK. The concept combines arcade games and classic consoles, with a drinks list of specially selected craft beer, themed cocktails and soda. NQ64 has opened five new bars in the last 18 months and following additional funding from ThinCats, management is targeting new locations in Leeds, Birmingham, Bristol, Bath, Nottingham, Reading, Belfast, Sheffield, Aberdeen, Brighton as well as further London sites following its successful opening in Soho earlier this year. NQ64 is on the hunt for new venues of between 4,000 and 10,000 square foot. The concept can trade in ground, basement or first floor locations and is known to pay an appropriate premium for late licensed sites in prime locations. Haygarth said: “We have a great team that has enabled us to open the first nine NQ64s, in a relatively short time. We are really excited about the next phase of growth. With the backing of Imbiba and our new partnership with ThinCats, we are looking forward to bringing our neon splattered drinking dens to a host of new guests. We generally now invest between £500,000 and £1m into the build of a new site.” Andrew Stones, partner at Imbiba, added: “Andy and Matt have built a really interesting and unique concept, and we are seeing plenty of great opportunities to expand the footprint throughout the UK. It's great to be supporting such an awesome young business on this journey.” Mike Dinnell, director of business development at ThinCats, said: “It is fantastic to be involved with a business like NQ64 that clearly has a strategy to grow across the UK. NQ64 is a bar where classic console games and great cocktails find perfect harmony across a range of age groups. The quality of the management team in place really underpins the growth plan we are supporting.” NQ64 was advised by Montane Finance and financial due diligence was conducted by Pierce & Co. Legal support was provided by Browne Jacobson and Hill Dickinson on the transaction.

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