CBPE Capital LLP (“CBPE”) today announces the sale of The Original Bowling Company (“TOBC”) to Electra Partners (“Electra”).
CBPE invested in TOBC in August 2010, acquiring a significant minority stake in the business. The sale to Electra represents an investment multiple of 2.4x CBPE’s original £20m investment.
During the period of CBPE’s investment, the company grew to become a leading player in the UK leisure market, with a well invested portfolio and strong focus on customer-led, technology-enabled operations. Today, TOBC operates 43 sites under the Hollywood Bowl and AMF brands, and employs 1,409 staff.
In line with CBPE’s investment strategy to back strong management teams and help them grow the business, CBPE provided equity funding to TOBC to help it acquire Hollywood Bowl from Mitchells & Butlers and selected units from AMF Bowling, creating the largest tenpin bowling operator in the UK. Further investment in people, systems and processes allowed it to deliver considerable growth ahead of the market. This growth has translated into strong financial performance: EBITDA has increased by over 60% to £15m in the current year.
CBPE has a strong track record in the consumer & leisure sectors which includes the highly successful investment in Park Resorts. The sale of TOBC follows the investment in Côte Brasserie in September 2013. CBPE is also the owner of Caravan Park operator Away Resorts. CBPE was advised by Rothschild.
Sean Dinnen, Partner of CBPE, who led the investment and sat on the board of TOBC said: “We are very pleased with the performance of The Original Bowling Company and proud that our investment and support has enabled management to build a truly differentiated, market leading business. TOBC’s demonstrable track record of growth and proven ability to roll out operational excellence across all its sites means it is well positioned for the future. We wish Steve and his team every success in the future.”
Steve Burns, CEO of TOBC said: “I would like to thank CBPE for their consistent support and guidance over their investment period which has seen TOBC undergo a transformation. We are now firmly established as a leading player in the UK leisure market and we can look forward to our next phase of development with confidence.”