Arc Inspoirations to fuel growth with £3m in funding

Leeds-based Arc Inspirations is set to open more venues after receiving £3m in funding from Santander Corporate & Commercial.

Established in 1999 by founders Chris Ure and Martin Wolstencroft, the independent bar and restaurant operator now owns and operates 11 bars throughout Yorkshire employing over 500 people.

Turnover is forecast to increase by 65 per cent to £18 million this financial year following the success of the Pit sites recently opened in Harrogate, Leeds and Chapel Allerton and Banyan in York.

The £3m will fund further expansion with a New York-themed bar “Manahatta” opening early November 2014 on Merrion Street in Leeds. A number of new sites are also planned for 2015.

Based on its successful business model of providing a wide range of premium quality food and drinks in exceptional environments, the group’s strategy is to open 5-10 new units over the next 5 years.

Andy Whelan, finance director, Arc Inspirations LLP, said: “The business has had a fantastic performance over its first 15 years, growing to 11 units with no external funds.

“Based on our strong and proven business model, we now believe the time is right to work with Santander to accelerate our expansion.

“Our team is focussed on delivering quality experiences to our customers and we are pleased to have Santander on board as they recognised the strength of our business immediately when delivering a complete funding package within a very quick timeframe.”

Tavia Sparks, relationship director, Santander Corporate & Commercial, said: “Arc decided the time was right for further investment to grow the business.

“Arc is a highly professional and progressive business and an excellent example of a Yorkshire company which has maintained a strong portfolio, even during challenging economic times.

“The growth achieved is a testament to the commitment and ambition of Chris and Martin and we are excited to support the business as it grows further”.

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