Atom Bank loan helps Fusion buy lodges freehold
Logierait Lodges near Pitlochry
Fusion Group, active across the hospitality and meetings & events sectors, has been backed by Atom bank, the UK’s first app-based bank, to secure a 100% freehold of Logierait Lodges near Pitlochry.
Having leased the self catering lodges at the popular park for the last 10 years, Fusion, headed up by group managing director, Alex McKie, has secured full ownership of the two acre asset.
Atom stepped in to refinance a private investment deal which the group had secured last autumn.
Atom’s refinancing assistance, which is the third time in total it has lent to Fusion, gives the business full ownership status at Logierait Lodges, which is just a short distance from the A9 in Highland Perthshire.
Over the past ten years Fusion has heavily invested in Logierait Lodges – in accommodation, in personnel, and in park on-site facilities – with the business now enjoying a 84% occupancy rate and EBITDA of 60% of turnover.
With the Atom deal now enabling further growth for Fusion, the group, which operates assets with over 600 bedrooms/lodges across the country, is now looking forward to working with more hospitality businesses through its new specialist commercial property agency, Drysdale & Co, launched last month.
Drysdale & Co services, such as potential management assistance, accommodation booking, and joint ventures & leasing, are designed to boost revenue and improve an operator’s profit margin, meaning that perhaps a sale of a hospitality asset is not needed, or, if it does go ahead, will sell at a much better price for the owner.
Commenting on the Logierait deal, which was secured with the assistance of Fusion’s broker, Douglas Pate, at Clear Sky Financial Services, Alex McKie said: “We are delighted to have been supported in this way by Atom bank and Clear Sky Financial Services, both of whom have gone the extra mile to ensure this deal happened, even although we are in the middle of an unprecedented global pandemic.”
“This move shows that when strong and stable businesses can demonstrate good underlying performance and leadership, banks can find the ability to lend to them in these very challenging times.”
He continued: “Hopefully this will be good news for others in our sector who will see not only that Atom bank is open and ready for good business, but that they should not give up.
“They must keep trying to find the right partners to work with, whether it’s a bank, or a specialist agency like our own Drysdale & Co. In this way, it is possible to secure paths out of the current predicament hospitality finds itself in.”
Commenting from Atom bank, Liam Brodie, regional business development manager said: “We understand just how difficult this time has been for business owners and that’s why we’ve been working tirelessly during the pandemic to ensure businesses receive the support they need.
“We have a continued commitment to support these sectors and also to our brokers over the coming months and years as we have sought to reprioritise our efforts towards the provision of fair, affordable and timely lending.
“As regional development manager for this area, I’m thrilled to see our hard work pay off and that Fusion Group are amongst our customers. We wish them a bright and successful future.”
Douglas Pate, finance broker at Clear Sky Financial Services, who has a four year relationship with Fusion, added his congratulations to the business: “We’re really pleased to have once again helped Fusion achieve its business aims.
“We want businesses to know that there are banks out there willing to lend money, even at a time like this.
“Finding the right broker to do the hard work for you is key, as Atom bank can only be accessed through a broker. We would echo what Alex says in not giving up.”
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