Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 29 August 2015

Seven Botanic Inns bars saved by new buyer

By Claire Cromie

Published 13/05/2013

Sold: Botanic Inns grew into Northern Ireland's biggest chain on the strength of its original pub, The Bot, on Belfast's Malone Road
Sold: Botanic Inns grew into Northern Ireland's biggest chain on the strength of its original pub, The Bot, on Belfast's Malone Road
Sold: The Northern Whig, Bridge Street
Sold: The King’s Head, Lisburn Road
For sale: The Apartment Bar, Donegal Square West
For sale: Ryan's Bar and Grill, Lisburn Road
For sale: The Kitchen Bar, Victoria Square
Ulster Rugby fans watch the 2012 Heineken Cup Final at the Botanic Inn, Belfast
Ulster Rugby fans watch the 2012 Heineken Cup Final at the Botanic Inn, Belfast
Ulster Rugby fans watch the 2012 Heineken Cup Final at the Botanic Inn
Crowds celebrate Arthur's Day at The Bot in 2010
Revelers enjoying a night out at the Northern Whig in 2009
A night out at Horatio Todds - George Shaw, Raymond Martin, Johnny Smyth and Ken Adams
Tracey Hall, Davina Sands and Leigh Courtney at the opening night of Horatio Todds
Nichola Leinster, Anna McCombe and Julie Scott at the opening night of Horatio Todds
A night out at Horatio Todds - David Ward and Richard Lee

Seven of the bars owned by Botanic Inns - Northern Ireland's biggest pub chain - have been sold.

The beleaguered company went into administration last week, leaving 600 jobs at risk across 14 pubs, hotels and restaurants in and around Belfast.

Administrators KPMG has said 300 jobs will be transferred to the new owners.

It has not been announced who the new buyer is - but they have bought the Botanic Inn, Horatio Todds,  Madisons Hotel, the Kings Head, the Northern Whig, the Elms and the Fly.

The new group has been called The Horatio Group - and it also includes off licence Dr:nk.

KMPG is still running the seven other bars - The Apartment, The Kitchen Bar, McHugh's, The Parador, Molly Browns, Denvirs and Ryan's.

Joint administrators John Hansen and Stuart Irwin said they were confident they would sell them "in due course" and secure the jobs of the remaining 300 employees.

Staff at The Bot tweeted in response to the announcement: "Remember last week when you all wanted to #savethebot? Well it worked! We're no longer under administration."

Originally a family-owned company, Botanic Inns had been trading since 1857 through its first outlet and flagship brand, the Botanic Inn.

It grew into Northern Ireland's biggest chain under former owner Jaz Mooney.

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