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Tuesday, June 26, 2023

Ultimate Leisure acquires Living Ventures for 28m

Ultimate Leisure Group announces the acquisition of Living Ventures for a total consideration of 28m. Living Ventures owns The Living Room brand. Founded in 1999, The Living Room is a high quality restaurant and bar business, operating from 13 sites situated in England and Scotland. This acquisition represents a further step in Ultimate's stated aim of developing the food-led side of its business. Following the acquisition, Living Ventures Ltd is to be renamed The Living Room Ltd.

The consideration is payable in cash and will be funded from the Company's current financial resources and debt facilities.

Ultimate will not be buying the group of restaurants trading under the Blackhouse Grill and Est Est Est brands. These will be retained by The Restaurant Group, Tim Bacon, Jeremy Roberts and other shareholders as defined by the restructuring of the assets of Living Ventures Ltd that took place immediately before this acquisition.

In the financial year to 31st March 2007, The Living Room delivered sales of 29.2m and site EBITDA of 6.050m. Ultimate Leisure will be taking on a number of key executives from Living Ventures, representing an associated central overhead of 850k per annum. The deal represents a cost per site of 2.151m and 4.6 x unit EBITDA. The food mix is considerable at 36% of total sales. The Living Rooms sales since the end of April have performed well and are +3.2% on a like for like basis.

Danny Fox, who has played a central part in building The Living Room business, will be joining Ultimate Leisure as Managing Director of The Living Room. He will also bring his highly-regarded operations, marketing and training teams.

Ultimate Leisure also announces that KBC Peel Hunt has been appointed as nominated adviser and broker with immediate effect.

Mark Jones, Chairman of Ultimate, commented: "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. At the same time, The Living Room will benefit from much greater investment, particularly as we look to more than double the number of its sites in the next 5 years".