Pizza float reheated
BrightReasons to try again after last year's abandoned £75m issue
Sunday 09 April 1995
Sources close to the company said it would like to attempt a flotation this autumn but that there will be no announcement until a firm date and a timetable have been hammered out.
BrightReasons, which operates the Pizza Land and Pizza Piazza restaurant chains, blamed market conditions for abandoning last November's flotation. Operating profits to the year ending in September were £6m, before interest charges of around £1m, on a turnover of £76m.
Mr Guthrie dismissed City speculation that investors, frustrated by the aborted flotation and worried about his health, were about to push through management changes.
Speculation about Mr Guthrie's future grew when he stepped down last month as chairman of Pavilion Services, the motorway services group, after it became clear that its venture capital investors wanted to sell the business.
But this weekend he was adamant. "I ain't packing up from BrightReasons," he said, adding that he felt perfectly healthy in spite of minor heart problems he suffered several years ago.
Ian Armitage at Mercury Asset Management, the group's majority shareholder, said he had complete faith in Mr Guthrie.
"I am delighted with progress at the group," he commented.
According to Mr Guthrie: "There was nothing to do any more at Pavilion once it was decided to sell rather than expand the group. The shareholders do not need an army of people there if they are not going to take the business forward.
"But the situation is different at BrightReasons. We have just arranged a three-year financing package, which enables us to open another 20 sites by the end of the financial year, and I am very relaxed about the way things are going."
Lazards, the merchant bank, has been appointed by Pavilion to advise on a sale of the company. Although Pavilion has traded profitably at the operating level since Mr Guthrie's £89m management buy-in from Rank Organisation in 1991, it has been forced to make large asset write-downs and has spent heavily on opening new service stations.
In 1993, Pavilion made pre-tax losses of £15.7m on turnover of £118.2m.
It is understood that the short-list of buyers for Pavilion includes Granada and two oil companies - possibly British Petroleum and Esso.
Oil companies are said to be keen to break into the motorway service business as a way of extending their retailing concepts at motorway service complexes.
- 1 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 2 Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 4 Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
- 5 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
Ian Brady: Moors murderer announces his support for Ukip and the SNP
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
Bali Nine executions in Indonesia: Death row British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford says she 'just wants to get it over with'
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £22500 per annum + OTE £30K: SThree: SThree Group have been well esta...
£25 - 30k: Guru Careers: We are seeking an Application Support Analyst / 1st L...
£45K - £55K (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a full stack .NET D...
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...