Portobello Pub Company acquires Darwin & Wallace

The acquisition means Portobello Pubs now comprises 27 sites.

Pub and restaurant operator, the Portobello Pub Company, has completed a deal to purchase the London-based neighbourhood bar and restaurant business, Darwin & Wallace.  

The acquisition will add seven high-volume venues in some of London's key 'villages' to Portobello's estate, such as Battersea Power Station, Clapham Old Town, Wimbledon and Richmond. 

Darwin & Wallace will continue to operate under the same name, providing guests with the same all-day dining and drinking offer, sustainability credentials and commitments. 

The deal means the expanded Portobello Pubs business now encompasses 27 sites, with plans to grow further via selective acquisitions. 

The new structure of Darwin & Wallace

Darwin & Wallace was founded by Mel Marriott in 2012, backed by private equity firm Imbiba and approximately 200 smaller individual shareholders through the government's Enterprise Investment Scheme. 

The agreement will see Marriott step down from day-to-day operations, with the group now led by Portobello managing director, Richard Stringer. The rest of Darwin & Wallace's current senior team will remain in place. 

On the acquisition, Mark Crowther, chairman of Portobello Pub Company, comments: "This is a fantastic acquisition for Portobello, bringing an extremely successful and high-quality business under our umbrella. It represents a fantastic opportunity for us to blend our existing high-quality estate of pubs and restaurants with a collection of truly excellent and premium high street hospitality venues."

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