Laurel Pub Company to close 22 pubs

26 February 2008 by
Laurel Pub Company to close 22 pubs

Laurel Pub Company will close 22 pubs this week after earmarking between 50 to 100 pubs for sale or administration as part of a refinancing exercise.

The closures will mainly affect those pubs reliant on alcohol sales rather than food.

Laurel has an estate of its 460 pubs and restaurants, which includes bar brand Yates's with 114 sites.

A spokeswoman for Laurel told Caterer: "It was always the plan that Laurel was going to refinance in 2008. That was in place back when Laurel bought La Tasca in May 2007. It is a fluid situation but the number of pubs would be between a minimum of 50 and a maximum of 100."

The closures will not affect Laurel's food-led business, which comprises of La Tasca and Slug and Lettuce and makes up approximately half of the estate.

"It is unhelpful having to refinance at this time but the food-led business has seen year-on-year growth," the spokeswoman added.

The pub industry is currently experiencing a torrid time with the double whammy of a now UK wide smoking ban combining with falling consumer spending.

• More than 20 offers have been made for all or part of the 33 strong Massive Pub Company estate, which was placed into administration earlier this month. David Thurgood, joint administrator at Grant Thornton, said: "I am now having meetings with four or five of those parties to get a little bit more detail on how these offers are going to work and whether they meet the requirements of the landlord." He confirmed that one of the interested parties included current Massive managing director Peter Linacre.

Laurel looks to put up to 100 pubs into administration >>

Administrators warn of further licensed trade failures >>

Premium Bar and Restaurants ‘cautious' about the future >>

High-street restaurants to undergo change >>

By Christopher Walton

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