Admiral Taverns has no acquisition targets on the horizon despite negotiating a refinancing package that has opened the lid to a £1b war-chest.
The third-largest tenanted pub company in the UK has renegotiated a three-year debt of £760m with Bank of Scotland and Irish Nationwide Building Society to refinance 1,755 pubs in the estate of 2,600, leaving it with multiple equity values in excess of £1b.
Although chief executive Gary Landesberg said that the finance package provided the company with "firepower to make acquisitions for its next stage of development", a spokesman said that there is "nothing on the table at the moment".
However, he added that the trend for the major operators to sell off pubs that are not driving profit means this could change. "Some management teams are spending their time on what is making the most profit," he sid, "but what Admiral is good at is extracting the value from those other types of pubs."
Meanwhile, Admiral has put for-sale signs over 106 of the 869 former Punch Taverns pubs in its estate.
Caterer revealed in May that 150 pubs in the £326m Punch purchase were categorised as "gold bricks" - properties worth more through their sale for alternative uses rather than retaining them as pub businesses.
By Christopher Walton