The UK’s largest pub operator Stonegate is reportedly considering the sale of 1,000 of its sites as it looks to pay off £2.6bn in debt.
Stonegate Pub Group, which also owns the Slug and Lettuce and Be At One brands, is looking to recoup around £800m from the sales, Bloomberg reports.
The TDR Capital-owned group acquired rival pub chain Ei Group in March 2020 for an estimated £1.27bn, bringing Stonegate’s total pub portfolio to around 4,500 sites.
It then became one of the many hospitality operators hit by the Pandemic, recording a pre-tax loss of £746m in the twelve months to September 2020 followed by a further loss of £233m the following year.
Stonegate is believed to be looking to convert many of its tenanted and leased pubs into managed operations.
The follows recent news that JD Wetherspoon is looking to offload a number of its pubs, after its chairman blamed tax rates on the hospitality industry for the difficulties the sector has faced.