Dixon Hospitality has swooped on another pub group, signing a $31 million deal to acquire the Beer DeLuxe portfolio in NSW, Victoria and Queensland.
Armada Hospitality was formed in 2012 by Craig Shearer and Jason Sheather, specialising in “management service solutions” for the hospitality industry. It went on to create its own brand, Beer DeLuxe, targeting the ever-growing demand for quality beer.
Beer DeLuxe now boasts five venues in NSW and Victoria* and is currently constructing its latest, in Queensland.
At the behest of Dixon Hospitality Group (DHG) Cropley Commercial approached Armada about purchasing its burgeoning brand, to become part of the growing DHG pre-IPO portfolio.
“There is great experience within Dixon Group already,” Shearer relayed to PubTIC.
“The access to capital this deal will provide will greatly assist our plans to fairly aggressively expand the brand’s position.”
Shearer says the deal has transpired very quickly over the past three months, and prior to the unsolicited approach the pair had “no intention” of putting the Beer DeLuxe brand to market.
“Ideally transitions like this happen best when executed swiftly. We will all be working toward making it happen as soon as possible, but there’s a lot of work to do yet,” he said.
Shearer and partner Sheather will retain key roles in the new set-up, working primarily on new sites for the Beer DeLuxe model, including the rebranding of some existing Dixon venues – a topic he says has been the focus of “top-line preliminary discussions but no firm decisions”.
“We’ve still got to iron out the details, but certainly expansion into new sites and development will be a high priority for Jason and I, and providing some strategic assistance in how to best maintain the brand integrity.
“The deal proved to be a great fit, with us assisting them with integration into the portfolio. Beer DeLuxe is something we are extremely passionate about, and it was important for us to be involved.”
Correspondingly, DHG echoed that the business concept will integrate nicely with its plans.
“We are delighted at the prospect of Beer DeLuxe joining the Dixon stable,” said Dixon corporate development director Michael Dixon.
“It is a very successful brand and we intend to continue the commitment of great service and an outstanding range of beer.”
*NSW venues include: Albury, Wagga Wagga, and most recently, King St Wharf, Sydney. The Victorian sites are in Melbourne’s Fed Square and Hawthorn.