London pub company Grand Union has expanded its senior management team with the appointment of three industry heavyweights as the firm gears up for growth in 2012.
Managing director and co-owner Adam Marshall will be joined by Tim Yates as finance director, Marc Rust as operations director and Anna Murashka as group sales and events manager. Co-owner Adam Saword is stepping down as co director.
Grand Union also announced plans to follow up a successful 2011, in which it opened two new Central London pubs in Farringdon and Paddington, with at least three new sites this year. The company currently operates 10 venues the capital.
Turnover last year was up 61% to £7.5m from £1.8m in 2008 and the firm was included in the 2011 Sunday Times Fast Track 100 of the fastest growing independent companies in the UK for the second consecutive year.
Yates joins Grand Union from Real Pubs where he was also finance director, in charge of heading the acquisition of Real Pubs by Greene King for £53m in April last year. He has worked in the hospitality industry for fifteen years having qualified as an accountant in 1994.
Commenting on his decision to join the pub company, Yates said: "Grand Union's plans for expansion are what attracted me to this young and dynamic company. Having led one of the most interesting leisure acquisitions of 2011, I am confident Grand Union has what it takes to succeed in this tough market.
"The brand is strong and the customer base is still spending; even in these tough economic times. I am very excited for Grand Union's prospects in the near and medium future."
Rust, whose last role head of London operations at Jamie's Italian, has a wealth of rollout expertise to bring to Grand Union, having previously worked for Tragus at Strada and Gondola Holdings for Zizzi & Ask.
Murashka has joined Grand Union to head its corporate and pro-active sales department following six years at Novus leisure, working in a number of their high capacity Central London venues.
By Janie Stamford
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