January 28th, 2013

Living Ventures offers a slice of fine dining

THE boss of restaurant and bar group Living Ventures is encouraging individual investors to buy a slice of its latest £2.5m fine dining venue.

Living Ventures offers a slice of fine dining

Managing director Tim Bacon said the group is looking to raise £750,000 and is offering a 30 per cent shareholding in its Manchester House Restaurant and Lounge Bar, which is due to open in Spinningfields in June.

In an unusual step, the company is offering 30 investors or "member partners" from the Manchester area to each take a one per cent stake for £25,000.

In return, shareholders will receive a yearly yield on their investment and a dividend. They will get access to priority bookings as well as a monthly expense account.

Their backing will fall under the government's Enterprise Investment Scheme, which encourages individuals to invest in smaller UK firms by offering tax incentives.

Mr Bacon, whose group has transformed drinking and dining in the Spinningfields area in the past two years, having opened The Alchemist, Australasia and The Oast House, has teamed up with Aiden Byrne, the youngest chef to win a Michelin Star in the UK, for the new venture.

The duo are planning a restaurant that ‘embodies Manchester and its people' and is ultimately aiming for a Michelin Star.

It will be based at Tower 12, Avenue North, Spinningfields, the building was formerly known as Manchester House and acts as the inspiration behind the name. It will feature a second-floor restaurant and a 12th floor Sky Lounge

Mr Bacon said: "This is a different kind of fundraising exercise and an alternative to approaching the banks.

"We want to bring in a mix of investors whom we want to be part of the business.

"A lot of people want to own a restaurant or be part of the restaurant trade, and this gives them the opportunity to do just that.

"We want Manchester people on board, who will come in, use the facilities, host parties and enjoy being part of it."

He added: "We've had a lot of interest in it already but I really want to mix it up and am keen to get female shareholders on board."

Living Ventures, which employs 1,100 staff, is set to turnover 45m for its current financial year which ends on March 31, and is targeting revenues of £50m for 2013.

It toasted its best Christmas trading to date, with sales up 14 per cent on the previous year, boosted by openings in 2012 which included a second Alchemist on New York Street, Manchester, and The Botanist, in Alderley Edge.

This year, Living Ventures expects to open Artisan, a pizza restaurant, which will also be in Manchester House, and the group is expanding the Australasia bar to create the Grand Pacific Bar and Garden.

The group, which operates a total of 27 venues, is also eyeing openings in Leeds and Liverpool.

In total, the group is investing £5m-£6m and will be recruiting around 200 staff during 2013.

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Enquiries: 01565 631234 or email: info@livingventures.com

Tags: Living Ventures, Manchester Evening News, Tim Bacon
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Living Ventures is the proud operator of some of the most exciting brands in the UK restaurant and bar market.