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PureGym £805m refinancing ‘one of the largest deals of its kind in the sector’s history’

PureGym has raised £805 million in a day to refinance the business
CEO, Humphrey Cobbold says the deal is one of the largest of its kind in the sector’s history
The company is setting out on a programme of 'significant expansion' in the UK, Switzerland, the Middle East and 'other attractive markets'
PureGym's interest payments will increase from £51 million to around £80 million due to higher interest rates, but Cobbold says the company has the scale and cashflow to manage this
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PureGym’s holding company, Pinnacle Bidco, has completed the £805m refinancing which was announced on Tuesday this week, with the rapid, one-day take-up of the offering indicating a strong appetite for the deal.

Thanking his team for ‘restoring business performance’ and ‘navigating the myriad challenges the company has faced since the start of the pandemic’, CEO, Humphrey Cobbold, said the scale of the deal is historic: “We’re delighted to have priced this refinancing, one of the largest of its kind in the sector’s history,” he commented. “We view this as a huge vote of confidence in PureGym, our recent trading, management team and strategy.

“This refinancing gives Pure Gym a distinct competitive advantage compared to more ‘resource-constrained’ competitors,” he continued. “There’s considerable demand for our affordable, flexible fitness proposition and we have a plan to take it to millions more people across our markets.

“This includes ongoing significant expansion in the UK, Switzerland and the Middle East with our own and franchise footprint and continued exploration of other attractive markets.”

The offering was for two tranches of senior secured notes – €380 million and £475 million – with both due in 2028. No opportunity was offered in the US.

The proceeds, together with cash on the company’s balance sheet, will be used to redeem existing loan notes – including the payment of accrued interest – as well as paying redemption premiums for existing Euro notes.

Pinnacle Bidco has also agreed an increased senior credit facility of £175.5 million (previously £145 million) from a syndicate of banks including Barclays, RBC, Deutsche Bank, ING and JP Morgan, taking the company’s investor commitments to almost £1 billion.

“I want to acknowledge and thank those longstanding investors who have once again chosen to support us and to welcome the new investors who have joined us at this time,” said Cobbold. “Our £300 million of available liquidity is further underpinned by the five-year extension of debt maturities. This gives us a stable financial platform to confidently progress our investment-focused strategy of opening new gyms and ensuring we maintain the quality of our existing facilities.”

Interest rates have been agreed at 10.00 per cent range for the Sterling tranche and 8.25 per cent for the Euros – substantially more than the interest being paid on the expiring loan notes – (£) 6.375 per cent and (€) 5.50 per cent.

PureGym’s interest payments will go from £51 million a year to around £80 million due to these increases, with Cobbold saying: “While the refinancing will mean a higher interest cost, reflecting the prevailing interest rate environment, we have the scale and cashflow to manage this alongside our expansion and investment plans.

“As we turn the page and begin a new chapter for the Group, in many ways this is the most exciting yet. We’ve been on a journey from start-up to being a market leader in the UK and then onto international expansion in Europe and more recently further afield.

“We now have the certainty and resources to action our clear plans to extend leadership in our existing markets and continue expansion elsewhere,” he said.

Cobbold said he sees PureGym as a global player, saying: “We’re clear that ‘scale players’ will lead this market in the years to come and are pleased to be one of a handful of international operators responsible for driving activity levels across the world.

“The management team and I are energised by the opportunities we see ahead and resolutely focussed on delivery of our strategy,” he concluded.

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PureGym’s holding company, Pinnacle Bidco, has completed the £805m refinancing which was announced on Tuesday this week, with the rapid take-up of the offering indicating a strong appetite for the deal.
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