Nightclub company looking for big venue in region

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NIGHTclub brand Gatecrasher is seeking a new, 3,000 capacity venue in Leeds, after it completed a restructuring programme.

Gatecrasher yesterday confirmed that it had closed its former Leeds venue in the Grand Arcade, because of its location, size and “limitations on development”.

The Gatecrasher business has been saved, along with around 120 jobs, after it was sold by administrators.

Earlier this month, Duff & Phelps were appointed administrators to Tiptoptap, formerly Gatecrasher Clubs and Bars, and Late Night Watford, formerly Gatecrasher Holdings.

Following their appointment, Duff & Phelps immediately secured the sale of the business and certain assets to Gatecrasher (Birmingham), Gatecrasher Clubs and Bars and GLN Trading.

In a statement, Duff & Phelps said the business had been established for more than a decade, and “has a history of success in the industry”.

The companies traded from four nightclubs based in Birmingham, Leeds, Nottingham and Watford, as well as a bar next to the Watford club.

Paul Clark, of Duff & Phelps, said: “We’re pleased with the outcome. It is great news that the future of Gatecrasher as a business and brand has been secured.”

Simon Raine, Gatecrasher’s chief executive, said: “The transfer of the business to the new company, along with extensive corporate restructuring and refunding of the business, has enabled Gatecrasher to progress on a secure financial footing.

“We now have a secure and positive platform to continue with our plans for domestic and international events. The restructuring was the only option available to ensure the continued viability and growth of the business and also preserve jobs.”

In a statement, Gatecrasher said that the core business remained “highly profitable” and significant investment, following a prepack administration, has allowed the brand to move forward.

A spokesman for Gatecrasher added: “Gatecrasher Group financiers have purchased the entire Barclays Bank debt and are converting it into shareholding equity, allowing Gatecrasher to move forward debt free. Substantial external equity funding is in place to allow the immediate progression of Gatecrasher’s expansion plans, which will continue to keep the restructured group debt free.”

When asked what would become of the creditors, a spokesman for Duff & Phelps said last night: “I don’t think it will be clear until the creditors’ report is finalised in three to four weeks.”

The restructuring will also allow for further investment in Gatecrasher’s global events business.