Investment manager

East Midlands pub group bought by major UK investment manager

A group of pubs founded in Derbyshire nearly 30 years ago have been bought by London-based investment manager Downing LLP.

The Pub People Group manages an extensive portfolio of venues in and around the East Midlands, including the Six Barrel Drafthouse and Bunkers Hill in Nottingham, the Duke of Wellington in Matlock and the Old Coach House in Southwell.

Following its acquisition by Downing, the group was merged with Autumn Pubs, managed under contract by Pub People since 2012.

Funds managed by Downing will be the majority shareholder in the combined business, which includes 49 pubs in total.

Kevin Sammons, who founded the Alfreton-based pub business in 1993, will move into a non-executive role with the new company.

Andrew Crawford, previously director of operations at Pub People, has been named managing director.

Sammons said, “I’m proud to have led and built this successful business, along with the many loyal and exceptional employees who have been instrumental in making it so successful. They can now continue the Pub People adventure with Downing and realize their potential and that of the Group. I am extremely grateful for the support Downing has given us over the past 10 years. Now is the time for me to step back and hand over to a worthy and capable successor and his team. »

Crawford said: “Kevin and I have worked very well together as a management team for over 20 years. We have built a company together that we can be truly proud of, but now there are new chapters to write. Although there are many economic challenges on the horizon, we have a strong team and, with Downing’s support, the group can continue to invest and grow its high quality pub business.

Downing has committed additional funds to help the new group of pubs grow through acquisitions.

Nick Carter, Associate Director at Downing, said: “Kevin and Andy have been our trusted and respected partners for over a decade. We wish Kevin good luck and are excited to take the band to the next level under Andy’s leadership.

Colin Corbally, Gautam Chhabra and Nick Carter led the acquisition of Downing, which was advised by Michelmores, HMT and K3 Advisory.

Pub People was advised by Browne Jacobson and BHP.

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