Paddy McKillen jnr’s Press Up selling stake for up to €50m

Goodbody receives first-round bids for 45% shareholding in Irish hospitality group

Irish hospitality group Press Up Entertainment, which is owned by Paddy McKillen jnr and other investors, is looking to raise up to €50 million through the sale of a 45 per cent stake in its business to investors.

Stockbroker Goodbody, which is advising the company on the process, is believed to have received first-round bids two weeks ago from a number of international parties for the shareholding in the fast-growing pub and restaurant chain.

Press Up’s owners are seeking to secure €45 million-€50 million for a 45 per cent stake in group, a figure that is based on the chain’s enterprise value of more than €100 million.

The share sale relates to Press Up’s trading operations only and does not involve any of the properties in which its 46 bars, restaurants and hotels operate. The company’s portfolio, which includes the Stella Theatre, Angelina’s, Captain Americas, Elephant & Castle and the Dean hotel are mostly located in buildings delivered by Mr McKillen jnr and Mr Ryan’s development business, Oakmount, which is operated independently of Press Up.


Its foremost venue, the Clarence Hotel, meanwhile, is located in a building owned by Bono, the Edge and Paddy McKillen snr.

In terms of Press Up's current shareholder structure, Mr McKillen jnr holds a 50 per cent stake, while his property developer father has 25 per cent. The remaining 25 per cent in the company is split equally between Mr Ryan and Liam Cunningham, a long-standing associate of Paddy McKillen snr.

The sale to investors will see the stakes of the current shareholders reduced on a pro-rata basis to 27.5 per cent in the case of Mr McKillen jnr and to 13.75 per cent in the case of Mr McKillen snr. Mr Ryan and Mr Cunningham will, for their part, share the remaining 13.75 per cent in the company.

The combined 55 per cent shareholding of Mr McKillen jnr and his existing partners will see majority control of Press Up remain in their hands.

Isle of Man

Press Up is ultimately controlled by Keillan, a company registered in the Isle of Man.

A spokeswoman for Press Up Entertainment declined to comment on the sale of the shareholding.

In early 2018, Press Up engaged Goodbody to assess its funding options, including an initial public offering (IPO) of shares on the stock market, with a view to raising as much as €60 million in equity.

The company held early-stage meetings with investors in Dublin and London in preparation for a potential flotation but ultimately did not proceed with the IPO.

Press Up's expansion continues apace with the development of the Mayson Hotel in the Dublin docklands, and new Dean hotels in Cork and Galway. Its existing crop of bars and restaurants is also set to grow with the addition of a rooftop venue and boutique hotel on the site of the former Clery's department store on O'Connell Street.

Press Up also plans to open a 300-seater steakhouse on the ground floor of an office scheme Oakmount is due to deliver as part of its refurbishment of the former headquarters of New Ireland Assurance on Dawson Street.

Outside the capital the company is set to open a five-screen Stella cinema alongside a branch of its Elephant & Castle restaurant at the Florentine Centre in Bray, Co Wicklow. The 250,000sq ft retail-led scheme is under development by Oakmount, and is due for completion in the first quarter of 2020.

Ronald Quinlan

Ronald Quinlan

Ronald Quinlan is Acting Property Editor of The Irish Times