Mayfair Gaming, the bingo operator with eight clubs across the UK trading under the name Riva Bingo, has been the subject of a secondary MBO backed by Hermes Private Equity. The Livingstone Leisure team, led by partner Simon Cope-Thompson, advised the management team. The deal provides an exit for high profile entrepreneur Luke Johnson’s investment group, Risk Capital Partners, which alongside RBS backed the initial buy-in with an £18 million funding package in June 2004. The Mayfair management team, led by Simon Hannah, CEO is reinvesting a significant proportion of its proceeds.
Mayfair Gaming has bingo halls in Aberdeen, Pudsey, Streatham, Bristol, Brighton, Newark and two sites in the Newcastle area. Management’s strategy is to grow the group through the roll-out of new clubs, targeting locations appropriate for a smaller operator to serve a local customer base. A ninth club is due to open later this year.
Simon Hannah, CEO of Mayfair Gaming comments: “Mayfair Gaming has developed as a strong national bingo operator in recent years and now has an excellent platform from which to develop. The Livingstone team did a great deal to facilitate this transaction. Their sensible approach ensured a relatively painless experience for management and at the same time secured the best possible terms”.
Justin Ward of Hermes Private Equity adds: “We believe the bingo market has some strong investment features – there is interesting potential to grow both organically and through acquisition of small operators in what remains a very fragmented market. Livingstone helped significantly in getting the deal done. We are excited about working with the Riva management to take advantage of the significant opportunities that we see in the market over the next few years”.
For further information, please contact:
Simon Cope-Thompson, Partner
T +44 20 7484 4706