Merivale expands Sydney reach with Vic on the Park

10 October, 2017 by Vanessa Cavasinni

By Vanessa Cavasinni, editor Australian Hotelier

The Marrickville pub Vic on the Park has been snapped up by Merivale for more than $20 million.

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This is the second pub purchase for the group in Sydney’s inner west, following the purchase of Queens Hotel (formerly Queen Victoria Hotel) in Enmore in 2015.

Vic on the Park is the seventh pub sold by John Singleton and Geoff Dixon’s Australian Pub Fund (APF), as it continues to divest its pub portfolio. The hotel was sold by Ray White’s Andrew Jolliffe and CBRE’s Daniel Dragicevich. No parties involved in the transaction would be drawn on the sale price, but did confirm it was in the predicted range throughout the campaign of between $22 million and $25 million.

Andrew Gibbs, CEO of APF, suggested that the fund will use the proceeds of the sale to finance other investments.

“The sale of the Vic on the Park continues our fund’s divestment strategy and means we will maintain the operation of the Unity Hall Hotel in Balmain, and both The Elephant and Exchange hotels in Brisbane. The sale also provides the opportunity for our fund to further consider acquisition opportunities already in front of it.”

Merivale CEO Justin Hemmes said the group was pleased to have an additional venue in the inner west.

“We have a self-imposed mandate to grow this wonderful business both deliberately and responsibly, and wherever we see property backed opportunities for us to create unique experiences for our loyal client base.

This mandate was confirmed to Australian Hotelier earlier this year, by new COO, Peter Gunning.

“Vic on the Park has long been at the heart of Marrickville, a vibrant community hub where people of all ages and walks of life can come together,” stated Hemmes.

“We have loved being part of the Inner West since opening Queens last year and can’t wait to take on what is undoubtedly an important and cherished venue in the area.”

The Vic on the Park Hotel is a large format corner block hotel operating 25 EGMs and with a hugely popular food and beverage business. It generates over $7.46m in annual sales.

Merivale will take over operations of Vic on the Park on 13 November. There are no immediate plans to renovate the venue, only to renew the focus on its food offering.

Meanwhile, the group’s last acquisition, The Collaroy on the Northern Beaches, is currently undergoing a refurbishment and is set to re-open this summer.