Ultimate Leisure snaps up Living Room chain to boost national presence

25 June 2007 by
Ultimate Leisure snaps up Living Room chain to boost national presence

Ultimate Leisure, the Northern bar and nightclub operator, has bought Living Ventures from the Restaurant Group for £28m.

The buy, its largest to date, will see 13 Living Room restaurant and bars in England and Scotland brought into the Ultimate fold at an average cost per site of £2.15m.

Living Ventures is to be renamed Living Room as part of the deal and Ultimate said it would double the chain in size during the next five years as it continues to transform its business.

Ultimate, under the leadership of former Yates boss Mark Jones, has been looking to turn itself from a regional to a national player and strengthen its food business.

Recent purchases have seen it acquire gastro pub chain the Bel and the Dragon as well as acquiring Prohibition brand from Living Ventures in 2006.

Mark Jones, Ultimate chairman, said: "The Living Room is an excellent brand with a very attractive customer offer. This acquisition represents a big move towards meeting our strategic priorities and at a sensible price."

Danny Fox, formerly director of sales and marketing and bar operations director at Living Room, will join Ultimate as managing director of the group.

In the financial year ending 31 March Living Room turned over £29.2m with a pre-tax profit of £6.05m. Food accounted for 36% of the total sales across the group.

Ultimate Leisure raises £25m war chest to spend on acquisitions >>

Ultimate plans national rollout for Prohibition >>

Ultimate pins recovery hopes on refurbishment and expansion >>

By Christopher Walton

E-mail your comments to Christopher Walton](mailto:christopher.walton@rbi.co.uk?subject=Ultimate Leisure snaps up Living Room) here.

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