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Reuben Harley, the company’s CEO intends to step down from the board following the completion of the deal and intends to sell up to 1,853,795 existing ordinary shares in conjunction with the placing.

The acquisition will be structured as a reverse takeover, after which Eclectic plans to change its name to The Brighton Pier Group plc. The deal is subject to shareholder approval.

“We are very pleased to announce the acquisition of Brighton Pier, one of the most iconic and instantly recognizable attractions in the UK,” said Luke Johnson, Executive Chairman of Eclectic. “The pier is hugely popular with the British public and it occupies a special place as a landmark at the heart of Brighton.”

“The pier has been well run and well maintained by the previous owners and we welcome Anne Martin and her first class management team to the newly enlarged Eclectic group,” Johnson added. “I’d like to thank Reuben Harley for his contribution to the success of the Group.  He leaves with our warm wishes.”

This acquisition represents the next stage in the group’s development, expanding the Eclectic’s existing portfolio and using the enhanced board’s diverse skill-set to become a differentiated operator of leisure and entertainment assets. 

The deal “comes one month after Eclectic – which runs bars for students and young professionals, but which has suffered of late from a reduction in that group’s drinking habits – said it swung to a profit in the first half of its financial year ended December 27, reporting pretax profit of £300,000 and revenue of £10.7 million,” said Hannah Boland of Alliance News. “The move to profit corresponds with leisure entrepreneur Luke Johnson having joined the company as executive chairman in June, being the biggest shareholder at 18%. Johnson is best known for building up the Pizza Express chain in the 1990s, but also founded and is chairman of private equity firm Risk Capital Partners LLP which holds investments in Giraffe restaurants and the Patisserie Valerie chain,” Alliance added. Eclectic Bar Group is a leading operator of premium bars in the UK. Eclectic’s portfolio comprises venues located in major UK towns and cities, predominantly targeting a customer base of sophisticated students midweek and stylish over-21s and young professionals at weekends. The company focuses on delivering added value for its customers, with premium product ranges, high-quality music and entertainment, and a commitment to high service levels and standards. The Eclectic Group trades across its estate under a variety of brands, including Embargo Republica, Dirty Blonde, Lowlander, Lola Lo, Sakura, Po Na Na, Fez Club and Coalition.]]>