44 Scottish pubs amongst over 4,500 at risk across UK as Stonegate owner TDR Capital seeks to ‘refinance’ £2.6 billion debt


GMB Union has highlighted the potential risk to more than 4.500 Stonegate pubs in the UK, as parent company TDR Capital seeks to refinance £2.5 billion of debt.

Amongst the UK-wide list of pubs owned by Stonegate on a list distributed by GMB Union are 44 in Scotland, including Aberdeen’s Slaine’s Castle and Triplekirks, Edinburgh’s Slug & Lettuce and Glasgow’s The Merchant.

The Union has warned that Stonegate Pub Company’s finances lack transparency, with the ultimate holding company based in the Cayman Islands.

Gary Lindsay, boss of TDR Capital which also owns supermarket giant Asda, told the Business and Trade Select Committee on Tuesday [9 January] he was ‘confident’ £2.6 billion of debts in the Stonegate Pub Company could be refinanced this year. 

However, with current high interest rates, GMB Union is concerned refinancing could lead to crippling payments to service the debt, Stonegate is one of the largest pub companies in the UK, with more than 4,500 pubs and more than 19,000 workers, including brands like Slug and Lettuce, Yates and Walkabout. [See attached for full list of Stonegate pubs]

Justin Bowden, GMB Regional Secretary, said:

“The position with the Stonegate Pub Company’s finances is lacking in transparency, with the ultimate holding company based in the Cayman Islands.

“TDR Capital must be accountable to local people and they have a duty to safeguard 4,500 pubs which are vital community assets.

“GMB’s experience with private equity owners has been, and continues to be, wholly negative.

“We fear for the future of our local supermarkets and pubs in the hands of their private equity owners.”

A Spokesman for Stonegate has also commented:

“We continue to invest in our pubs and our people, in particular supporting local pubs which play such a key role in their communities. Our pub business remains very resilient despite the challenges our industry faces, with good like-for-like sales growth across the group. Following our recent successful financing announced in December as well as strong recent trading, we are well placed to deliver on our longer term objectives and we are very confident in our ability to re-finance at the appropriate time.”

Scottish Stonegate-owned pubs:

Slains CastleBelmont Street Aberdeen
The TriplekirksSchoolhill Aberdeen
Foundry41-43 Holburn Street Aberdeen
MurdosCairncry Road Aberdeen
The Black Dog27 North Donside Road Aberdeen
Bobbin500 King Street Aberdeen
Village InnLoch Long Arrochar
Tullie InnBalloch Road Balloch
Finnegans Wake9b Victoria Street Edinburgh
Slug & Lettuce Edinburgh Omni CentreUnit 8 Edinburgh
Slug & Lettuce Edinburgh George Street113-115 George Street Edinburgh
The Chanter30-32 Bread Street Edinburgh
The Southsider3-7 West Richmond Street Edinburgh
Hanover Tap112 Hanover Street Edinburgh
The Amber Rose22-26 Castle Street/Rose Street Edinburgh
Nether Inn134 Nethergate Dundee
The Braes14-18 Perth Road Dundee
The First Edition50 Bank Street Kilmarnock
The StationStation Road Bearsden
New Market BarUpper Newmarket Street Falkirk
East Port7 East Port Dunfermline
The Exchequer60 High Street Kirkcaldy
The Rule116 South Street St Andrews
Home80 Albion Street Glasgow
Three Judges141 Dumbarton Road Glasgow
The James Tassie63-65 Kilmarnock Road Glasgow
The Bank443 Clarkston Road Glasgow
The Old Smiddy131 Old Castle Road Glasgow
The Ark42-46 North Frederick Street Glasgow
Hall457 Sauchiehall Street Glasgow
Missoula Glasgow110-114 West George Street Glasgow
Popworld Glasgow110-114 West George Street Glasgow
The Merchant134-136 West George Street Glasgow
Felson’s Glasgow128 Renfield Street Glasgow
Walkabout Glasgow128 Renfield Street Glasgow
The Howgait100 St James’ Road Glasgow
Lauders16 Church Street Inverness
The Caledonian9 High Street Inverness
SandemanSandeman Building Perth
Bull Inn7 New Street Paisley
Abbey InnBarrhead Road Paisley
Hudsons14-16 Cornwall Way East Kilbride
The Ballencrieff31-45 Hopetoun Street Bathgate
West Port Hotel18-20 West Port Linlithgow

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