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BGF invests in coaching inns operator

BGF News 03.01.2015

Coaching inns operator Bulldog Hotel Group has secured a £4.5m investment from BGF to support its planned £20 million expansion across England. The Boston-headquartered business operates seven hotels and will use the capital injection to double the number of properties in its portfolio over the next three to four years.

Bulldog was recently named as one of the London Stock Exchange Group’s 1000 Companies to Inspire Britain 2015, an annual celebration of some of the fastest-growing and most dynamic small and medium-sized enterprises in the UK.

Bulldog specialises in finding high quality coaching inns and revitalising their offer across food, drink and accommodation to attract tourists as well as local and business trade. With annual sales in excess of £10m, the Group has capitalised on the growth of the UK eating out market, which is estimated to have doubled over the past 12 years, supported by an increasingly buoyant regional hotel market, which is forecast to reach record levels this year.

Founder and Managing Director, Kevin Charity, is now looking to acquire more properties in English market towns around the UK. To support the planned growth, Edward Walsh joined as Finance Director earlier this year and became a shareholder in the business through an investment made by Commer Group.

Bulldog’s existing hotels are located across Yorkshire, Leicester, Lincolnshire, Northampton, Gloucestershire and County Durham.

Kevin Charity, Managing Director, Bulldog Hotel Group said: “We have ambitious plans for the next few years, which are centred on finding and acquiring the right estates in the right locations, and sensitively restoring them in line with the character of local surroundings.”

“BGF’s investment means that we are able to pursue our growth plan without financial distractions or cash flow restrictions. Already, through BGF, we have met a number of high calibre, senior people within the hospitality sector that have been able to provide insight and guidance to our plans – this type of strategic support is invaluable.”

Mark Freer, BGF said: “Bulldog has grown through the acquisition of individual hotels and has a strong track record of substantially improving profitability at every site. We are backing a strong management team, with plenty of energy and extensive experience in the hotel and hospitality market.”