Brains secures £85m funding for coffee shop roll-out

Drinks: Coffee
Other: Business

Welsh brewer and pub operator SA Brain and Company has agreed an £85 million funding package to help accelerate the roll-out of its award-winning Coffee#1 chain.

The brewer also said some of the funds – which have been jointly provided by Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking and HSBC Corporate Banking – would also go into revitalising some of its 231 pubs, both managed, and leased and tenanted. The funding package comes from a refinancing of the company’s existing debt.

Coffee#1 was established in Cardiff in 2001 and now operates 57 coffee shops in its heartland of Wales, the South-West, the South Coast and the Midlands. The business was purchased by Brains in 2011. The new funding package will facilitate further geographic expansion across the UK.

Martin Reed, finance director at SA Brain, said: ‘We own a portfolio of outstanding assets and this funding will allow us to further leverage these and better meet the needs of our customers. The roll out of Coffee#1 has been a huge success, with consumers enjoying our unique mix of outstanding coffee, characterful coffee houses and customer-focused service. The acceleration of our store roll-out programme into new areas will capitalise on this and introduce our popular Coffee#1 brand to new audiences across the UK.’

‘The funding and ongoing support provided by Lloyds Bank and HSBC is fundamental to driving long-term business growth. We look forward to continuing to work with both our banking partners as we further develop our business.’

Brains has an annual turnover of £123m and employs over 2,000 people at its head office in Cardiff and across its retail operations.

Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking and HSBC Corporate Banking worked together as joint banking partners and each provided £42.5m to the business.

About Author

Claire Dodd

As a freelance journalist, Claire has written about pretty much any topic you can imagine, from which are the best sausages, to how to flood-proof your home. However, her writing on drinks began when she landed a job as a features writer for the Publican magazine in 2007. Adjusting to a lifestyle of sampling the best drinks from around the world was tough, but someone had to do it. Having left the title in 2011, today Claire focuses on drinks and travel writing for both consumer and trade titles. Aside from searching the globe for the best drinks, and the nicest spots to consume them, she also judges global brewing competitions and keeps an eye on the business moves of the on-trade.

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