Adnams calls in advisers to seek funds to save 152-year-old Suffolk brewer | Hospitality industry

Adnams has confirmed it has called in advisers to explore options to raise funds as the Suffolk-based brewer aims to secure its financial future.

The 152-year-old company, which is based in Southwold in Suffolk, has instructed Alvarez & Marsal to “explore a range of options to fund the company’s future growth plans”.

It said in a statement on Monday: “As a business of more than 150 years, and ever mindful of the challenges faced by the hospitality and brewing industries in recent times, the company is continually proactive in seeking ways to ensure that the business is even more resilient for the years to come.”

Shares in Adnams, which has seen its market value drop by almost two-thirds over the past year, fell nearly 5% after the news.

Options are likely to include private capital from a high net worth investor or family office, as well as potentially the sale of some of Adnams’ freehold assets from its estate of 45 managed inns and properties.

In September, the company reported that operating losses in the first half of the year to June widened to £2.4m, compared with an £811,000 loss in the same period in 2022, as revenues remained flat at £30m.

The founding family remains the largest shareholder in the brewer, which has expanded into gin, beer and offering tours including of Southwold lighthouse.

The hospitality industry continues to struggle to recover from the pandemic. Last year, the Yorkshire-based Black Sheep was bought out of administration by the investment firm Breal for around £5m.

Breal has since acquired a number of struggling firms, including the Warwickshire-based Purity Brewing Company, the owner of Session IPA, as well as south London’s Brick Brewery, and Brew by Numbers.

The Leeds-based North Brewing Co also fell into administration last month but was saved by Steve Holt, the director of fellow Leeds brewery Kirkstall Brewery.

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The board of Adnams includes Steven Sharp, a former executive director at Marks & Spencer, and Simon Townsend, the former boss of the pub operator Ei Group. Others include Andy Wood, Jenny Hanlon, and Karen Hester.

Adnams was formally established in 1890 but the company charts its roots to 1872, when George and Ernest Adnams bought the Sole Bay Brewery in Southwold.


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