Regent Inns, the pubs group which last summer announced a surprise
profits warning that rocked the industry, has hired Finsbury to handle
its financial communications.
Finsbury started work for the group this month, handling communications
with financial media and City analysts. Regent Inns retained Holborn PR
until December 1998. Finsbury partner James Murgatroyd will lead the
Regent, which owns the Australian theme pub chain Walkabout Inns and
Jongleurs comedy clubs, had a difficult year in 1998.
The group announced last summer that it had been calculating
like-for-like sales figures inaccurately. The subsequent profits warning
had a knock-on effect on other pub operators, including Yates Brothers,
JD Wetherspoon and Slug and Lettuce.
There has since been speculation that rival pubs operation SFI Group,
which holds a three per cent stake in Regent, was planning a merger with
the beleaguered group.
Regent’s finance director, Clive Watson, left last April, having
announced his intention to leave in September 1997. Plans for him to
join Holborn as a consultant were shelved after the accounting
Because of the controversy, Watson appointed Basham and Coyle managing
director Emma Kane to manage his own reputation.