Fuller, Smith & Turner, the Chiswick-based family brewer and pub operator, has acquired the Bel & The Dragon collection of country inns from Longshot.
The announcement was made in Fuller’s annual results for the year to 31 March 2018, published this morning.
Bel & The Dragon, comprising pubs in Berkshire, Hampshire and Surrey with a total of 57 bedrooms, were sold by Longshot, which is headed up by Joel Cadbury and Ollie Vigors. Longshot is the owner of Beaverbrook, the luxury country house hotel and exclusive golf club which opened in Leatherhead, Surrey, last year following a £90m renovation.
Fuller’s chief executive Simon Emeny said the new pubs pubs were “a perfect fit” for the comapny’s existing estate. “They offer delicious, fresh food, an interesting and premium drinks portfolio – all areas where we have expertise.”
The addition of Bel & The Dragon to Fuller’s follows the group’s recent acquisition of four bars in the City of London from We Are Bar Group.
Fuller’s results showed a 3% increase on pre-tax profits to £43.2m and a 5% rise in turnover to £403.6m.
Performance across the group’s 190 tenanted pubs was strong with like-for-like profits up 3%, while its portfolio of around 200 managed pubs and hotels recorded a like-for-like sales increase of 2.9%.
Meanwhile, total beer and cider sales were largely flat in what the group said is “a challenging market place”.
Emeny said: “While we are still in a time of national and global uncertainty – and we do not underestimate the related wider market and economic issues that we will have to navigate over the months ahead – we believe we are in a strong position.
“We have an excellent team of motivated people both at management level and throughout the business, we have pubs that are well-invested and in strong, iconic locations, and we have a bold and proud portfolio of beer and cider brands. These assets are backed by a robust financial position and that puts us in a good place to continue to deliver for our shareholders, our customers and our employees.”