Stonegate buys MacLays

Maclays has been sold to The Stonegate Pub Company by administrators EY (Ernst & Young LLP). The company  has bought 15 sites across Scotland, formally owned by the Maclay group. The sites sold include The Three Judges, The Bank and The Lansdowne in Glasgow; The Tullie Inn, Balloch, The Southsider in Edinburgh and The Rule in St Andrews.

The Stonegate Pub Company put in the highest offer with other bidders thought to include Hawthorne Leisure, Signature Pubs, G1 and  won over bids from competitors including Hawthorn Leisure, Signature Pubs, and Caledonian Heritable.

Colin Dempster and Gavin Yuill, Joint Administrators of Maclay Group plc and Maclay Inns Ltd (MIL) said that the sale would secure the jobs of “head office staff and pub employees, who will formally transfer to Stonegate on completion, which is anticipated to be in mid-July 2015.”

The Joint Administrators were appointed on 23 January 2015 and, given the underlying strength of the business, all of the units have traded as going concerns during the administration period while a purchaser was sought. A substantial level of interest in the portfolio was expressed during the sale and marketing process, and the sale to Stonegate represents excellent value for the group’s creditors.

Gavin Yuill, Joint Administrator, said “this represents an excellent result for MIL, its employees and creditors.  We have been impressed with Stonegate’s approach during the sales process, and we are looking forward to working closely with Stonegate over the coming weeks to facilitate a smooth transition of all units and staff to it.”

Stonegate’s existing portfolio in Scotland includes 26 sites with over 600 employees.

Stonegate’s Chief Executive Simon Longbottom said, “The prudent reviewing and planning of our estate has enabled Stonegate to invest in a high quality, predominantly freehold business that further strengthens our portfolio within Scotland. We look forward to welcoming the teams in situ into the Stonegate family.”