Ultimate pins recovery hopes on refurbishment and expansion
Northern bar and nightclub operator Ultimate Leisure is pinning its hopes for recovery on refurbishment and expansion of its existing estate.
Pre-tax profits nose-dived 67% year-on-year to £1.6m (2004: £4.9m) in the six months ended 31 December, as customers shunned the company's increasingly tired estate.
Turnover was 11% down on the same period a year earlier at £17.5m (2004: £19.6m).
Ultimate's chairman Mark Jones said: "These disappointing results reflect the historic lack of investment in the core business and the tough trading environment."
Jones said the company would be spending the majority of its resources refurbishing its core estate in the second half of the year.
It also plans to role out a number of new bars under the Prohibition name, which it bought from Living Ventures in December last year.
Ultimate is also refocusing its efforts on staff training and will be investing in new EPOS tills and back office software.
By Chris Druce