The company behind Tom Kerridge's Pub in the Park festivals has been bought in a pre-pack administration after the chef stepped into "save" the popular events.
Brand Events TM Ltd has been acquired by new entity Pub in the Park Festivals Ltd, which lists its directors as Kerridge, David Allan and Chris Hughes, the chief executive of Brand Events.
Brand Events was created in 2017 as a joint venture between Brand Events Holdings Ltd and publisher Trinity Mirror (now Reach plc), to launch a family of consumer event and festival brands.
An administrators' report reveals that Pub in the Park was a major commercial success growing to 10 events annually and with a turnover of £6.4m in 2022. Other events including the Hand Made Fair, Travelling Feast, Keswick Mountain Festival and the Gourmet Picture Company, lost the business money.
Under the prior agreement Kerridge was entitled to 20% of Pub in the Park's annual profits and owned 20% of the intellectual property of the business.
He and the other directors of Pub in the Park Festivals Ltd have paid £175,000 for the business and taken on a debt owed to Barclays, which documents state it will settle outside of the administration.
Their purchase has seen 15 employees transfer to the new business, all of which have "secure long-term jobs".
The deal, which completed this summer, also saw the new directors invest £1m to maintain goodwill and relationships with suppliers.
A spokesperson for Kerridge told The Sunday Times: "Tom Kerridge worked with other investors and the administrator to save his popular festival business Pub in the Park. He acted in good faith for all involved."
The line up for next year's Pub in the Park festivals has already been revealed with the run reduced to four events in Marlow, Reigate, Chiswick and St Albans.
A spokesperson said: "The plan is to build on the previous success of Pub in the Park but with emphasis on fewer festivals, but making each one larger than in previous years, starting with Marlow, Reigate, Chiswick and St Alban's."
A statement posted to the Pub in the Park website when the dates were announced had read: "We are sad not to be returning to towns where we've had so much fun in the past, but in the current climate our Pub in the Park smaller shows are unfortunately unviable."
The directors of Brand Events have said: "Tom Kerridge worked with other investors and the administrator to save his popular festival business Pub in the Park. A new company bought the festival and ensured they successfully operated all summer.
"Attempts to link Tom to Brand Events debts and decisions are entirely unfair and inaccurate. Tom Kerridge deserves huge credit for defending the interests of all those involved in the Pub in the Park festival events."
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