Pub group looking to sell its commercial property division

Fri, 13 Jul 2018 | DIVISION SALE

Ei Group, the UK’s largest pub company, is looking to sell its commercial property division which has a potential valuation of up to £300 million.

Formerly known as Enterprise Inns, Ei Group has appointed Rothschild investment bank as its advisor to help consider a number of its business options, including the potential sale of some or all of its 351 properties.

The company’s commercial properties comprise of free-of-tie pubs and venues that were previously pubs but have since been adapted for other uses such as convenience stores and restaurants.

The free-of-tie pubs receive no direct support from the company and are run on long-term rental agreements, unlike the majority of the group’s other 4,700 pubs.

The May 2018 results showed that the average net income per property rose to 8.2 per cent to £68,600 annually; despite this, the group has previously faced much debt due to the onset of the recession and the smoking ban.

Ei Group was founded by Ted Tuppen in 1991, who bought a number of pubs from large brewers like Whitbread, Scottish & Newcastle and Bass following the regulation reforms. When the group was performing at its best, it owned 8,500 pubs across the country.

The group’s spokesperson has declined to comment.

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