Hollywood Bowl raise £30m to invest ahead of May reopening

Hollywood Bowl expansion
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With 9 new centres on the horizon, and three expected to be completed by the end of the year, Hollywood Bowl has earmarked £30m in raised capital to go towards improving its entertainment offer – including more arcades.


Hollywood Bowl has raised £30m from investors as the operator plans to expand the offering in its chain of UK bowling alleys ahead of its reopening date.

The leisure firm completed a share placing to raise the cash before 17 May – the date indoor hospitality businesses are once again allowed to accept visitors – with a view of improving its entertainment offer for the pent up demand of a year of lockdowns.

“Today’s successful placing allows us to reignite our customer-led growth strategy as we look ahead to the reopening of our estate, enabling investment in our exciting new centre pipeline, our ongoing refurbishment programme, as well as the rollout of initiatives to enhance our customer proposition,” said Stephen Burns, chief executive of Hollywood Bowl Group. “We look forward to welcoming our customers and team members back to our centres in May.”

The company will use the proceeds of the raise to invest in its new centre pipeline, refurbish some of its venues, and roll out new initiatives. Analysts from Shore Capital Markets viewed the move by Hollywood Bowl as a positive one, stating the pandemic had created additional opportunities for ten-pin bowling and mini-golf in ‘prime’ locations in the UK.

“We see mini-golf, through its new Puttstars concept, as especially attractive (given flexibility) as more sites become available,” said the investment group.

Hollywood Bowl is also in negotiations on a further nine new Puttstars centres, with gross capital expenditure requirements of around £2.4m per venue. The mini-golf experience could be on site at three centres before the end of the year, implying a total investment of £7m to £8.5m, Shore Capital Markets said in a note to investors.

While bowling and mini-golf may be the main event of Hollywood Bowl’s expansion proposals, the group plans to support each venue with an amusement arcade and a food and beverage offer.

“Once complete, the exciting new venues will bring bowling and mini golf experiences to the town, featuring food and beverage, along with amusement arcades for people to enjoy,” said the operator.

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