Tottenham tycoon Joe Lewis gets his ally a seat on pub group M&B’s board
JOE Lewis, the Bahamas based billionaire who controls football club Tottenham Hotspur, yesterday won his battle to gain a seat on the board of pub group Mitchells & Butler (M&B).
Lewis has appointed Richard McGuire, a former Citigroup investment banker, as a non-executive on the board after passing the stake threshold needed for a board seat.
Lewis, through his investment vehicle Piedmont, has raised his stake to 23 per cent stake in the pub group which owns high street chains All Bar One. McGuire’s job is believed to be pushing Lewis’s interests which could include breaking up the company, giving rise to speculation that Lewis could make a bid for M&B.
The pub group agreed with Piedmont that it could appoint two non-executive directors when its interest exceeded 22 per cent. It is thought that Lewis may team up with John Magnier and JP McManus — the Irish racing tycoons who have 16 per cent of the stock — to push for a board shake-up. The pub group recently parted ways with its chief executive Tim Clarke. Acting boss Adam Fowle is now a favourite for the top job after confirming he has had interviews for the position.
M&B yesterday reported like-for-like sales up 1.7 per cent in the 8 weeks to July 11. Like-for-like drink sales were up 3.2 per with food sales rising 2 per cent.