By Clyde Mooney – editor Australian Hotelier

Industry sources have confirmed reports that Goldman Sachs has sold up its share of the Australian pub market just months after leading a consortium of hedge funds into the purchase of the embattled Redcape Property Fund and National Leisure & Gaming (NLG) companies. 

In 2011 and 2012 the New York-based investment giant fronted Vardë Partners and York Capital in a $600+ million purchase of Redcape and NLG's debt from their senior debtors, with subsequent share buy-up and complete takeover. 

Goldman Sachs' (GS) exit and Redcape's recent sell-off of selected assets has prompted speculation that the remaining hedge funds are priming the restructured company for a public listing to capitalise on their investment to date. 

The Australian Financial Review on Wednesday suggested that Vardë and York could alternatively be planning a sell-down of Redcape's large property portfolio, after the successful sale of a number of venues in recent months. 

At least nine pubs have gone to market since the two companies were rolled into one late 2012, combining the venue management aspects of NLG with the freehold and leasehold assets of the former RPF.

Goldman Sachs and Redcape both declined to comment on the developments. 

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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