• M&A Leisure deal flow bulletin

    December edition

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M&A Leisure deal flow bulletin - December edition

29 December 2017

Welcome to the December edition of our bulletin – the BDO M&A Leisure team's monthly overview of the latest M&A activity we've seen in the leisure space.

Travel deal flow

  • BDO were delighted to advise on the sale of London social media startup Twizoo to Skyscanner. The social content platform will bolster Skyscanner's hotel reviews and recommendations.
  • After paying £1.4bn for Skyscanner in 2016, Chinese online travel agent Ctrip has acquired the travel search startup Trip.com for an undisclosed amount.
  • Forest Holidays has been sold to Phoenix Equity Partners. LDC, who invested in the business in 2012, will remain a minority shareholder alongside the Forestry Commission. BDO acted as lead financial advisers to LDC.
  • Meanwhile, Phoenix has sold escorted tour operator Riviera Travel to Silverfleet Capital for an undisclosed amount.
  • Lastminute.com Group has announced the acquisition of Hotelscan to "expand its metasearch business into other verticals," according to the Group's online press release.
  • Lakelovers, the luxury holiday cottages business based in the Lake District, has been acquired by LDC for an undisclosed amount.
  • Clyde Travel Management, expert in business travel, has acquired competitor Beaver Travel, based in Northern Scotland, to expand the group's reach in the area.
  • Luxury tailormade travel specialist Exosphere has been acquired by rival Oxford Private Travel for an undisclosed sum.

Restaurants and Bars deal flow

  • Graphite Capital has sold its stake in London Restaurant Group Corbin & King to Thai hotelier Minor, who has acquired a majority stake in the business for £58m.
  • Brighton Pier Group, owner of Eclectic Bars, has agreed terms to acquire mini golf and football retail centre owner Lethington Leisure for £10.5m.
  • Bridgepoint, the PE house behind Pret A Manger and Azzurri Group, has agreed to invest in Burger King UK, MCA has reported.
  • Mayfair Equity Partners backed Yo! Sushi has acquired 600-strong North American chain Bento Sushi for £59.2m to create a multi-brand, international sushi heavyweight.
  • Coffee chain Grind raised £2m in one week via a crowdfunding campaign to aid expansion plans that include a transport hub roll out in 2018. 
  • Three Hills Capital Partners is to be the majority shareholder of Byron after acquiring part of the stake held by Hutton Collins. The deal is part of a rescue strategy that will also see a number of site closures over the coming year.

Pubs and Brewers

  • 34-site pub operator City Pub Group listed on AIM with a market cap of £96m and at an EBITDA multiple of approx. 16x. Founder David Bruce would like to grow the business to be worth £200m by 2020. 
  • Heineken has acquired a minority stake in Brixton Brewery to enable the company to continue operating in the area and expand its brewing capacity.
  • Deltic has acquired a 3% stake in Revolution Bars Group, fuelling speculation that Deltic may not have abandoned hope of a merger between the two companies.
  • Amber Taverns would like to expand its c140 site business by 10 to 12 new sites a year for the next five years. The company is backed by Ares Capital Management and has been granted a new £100m growth facility from HSBC.
  • Laine Pub Company, the Brighton and London based operator, has acquired the four-strong Distinct Group.

Please contact one of the M&A Leisure team if you would like to discuss any of the topics raised in more detail.

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