Spirit Pub Company

Spirit Pub Company plc (Spirit) was a pub and restaurant company in the United Kingdom, based in Burton upon Trent and originally formed by Punch Taverns. It was listed on the London Stock Exchange, until it was acquired by Greene King in June 2015.

Spirit Pub Company plc
Traded asLSEPUB
FoundedAugust 2011
DefunctJune 2015
HeadquartersBurton upon Trent, England, UK
Key people
  • Mike Tye (chief executive​ officer)
  • Walker Boyd (non-executive​ chairman)
Revenue£ 800.9 million (2014)[1]
£ 121.2 million (2014)[1]
£ 99.4 million (2014)[1]
The Redan in Bayswater, one of Spirit's pubs


Spirit Group was originally formed by Punch Taverns in 1999, to operate its managed pub estate including pubs acquired from Allied Domecq.[2] Spirit Group was demerged by Punch in February 2002.[2] Spirit Group then acquired Scottish & Newcastle’s retail business, before itself being re acquired by Punch in May 2006.[2] Spirit was demerged from Punch Taverns for a second time in August 2011.[3]

In January 2015, the shareholders accepted a takeover offer from Greene King. The takeover was completed in June 2015.[4]


In August 2013, Spirit had seven hundred and seventy seven branded, managed pubs throughout the United Kingdom, and a further 452 leased pubs.[5] Spirit employed an average of 16,800 people in 2013.[6] Spirit admitted that most of its staff are engaged on zero hours contracts, with short notice of the hours to be worked.[7]

At August 2013, its properties were valued at £1,375m. It had net debt of £891m, including £147m of interest rate swap obligations.[5] It proposed a restructuring of its bond obligations.[8]

Taylor WalkerEdit

There were 120 Taylor Walker pubs, mostly in West and Central London, which competed with Nicholsons. The name is taken from the Taylor Walker brewery, founded in 1730 in Stepney. Following the takeover by Greene King, the Taylor Walker brand was retired, with pubs being brought under the brand Greene King.[9]

Other brandsEdit

Spirit's other brands were Chef & Brewer, Fayre & Square, Flaming Grill, John Barras, and Original Pub Company. In addition, Spirit Pub Company operated Wacky Warehouse, the largest soft play and activity centre brand in the United Kingdom, and Good Night Inns, a group of hotels next to their pub restaurants.[10]


  1. ^ a b c "Annual Results 2014" (PDF) (Press release). Spirit Pub Company. Retrieved 3 April 2015.
  2. ^ a b c "History". Spirit Pub. Retrieved 22 December 2014.
  3. ^ Wingett, Mark (1 August 2011). "Spirit shares start trading after Punch demerger". The Publican's Morning Advertizer. Archived from the original on 29 July 2012. Retrieved 22 December 2014.
  4. ^ "Recommended Offer for Spirit Pub Company PLC ("Spirit") Greene King PLC ("Greene King") to be effected by means of a Scheme of Arrangement under Part 26 of the Companies Act 2006" (PDF). Spirit Pub. 13 January 2015. Retrieved 17 March 2015.
  5. ^ a b "Spirit Group Annual Results 2013" (PDF) (Press release). Spirit Pub Company. 22 October 2013. Retrieved 22 December 2014.
  6. ^ "Annual Report 2013" (PDF). Spirit Pub. p. 73. Retrieved 17 March 2015.
  7. ^ "Wetherspoon and Spirit Group admit most of their staff are on 'zero hour' contracts". Mail Online. Retrieved 22 December 2014.
  8. ^ Fletcher, Nick. "Spirit Pub Company moves higher on bond restructuring plan". The Guardian. Retrieved 22 December 2014.
  9. ^ "Taylor Walker & Co Ltd". Retrieved 22 December 2014.
  10. ^ "Home page". Spirit Pub. Retrieved 22 December 2014.