Luminar Leisure Ltd., the parent company of nightclub chains Oceana, Liquid & Envy, filed for administration on Wednesday.
Far from striking the end note, Luminar intends to keep their 75 clubs across the UK open indefinitely. The company is keen to dispel rumours about the fate of 3,000 full-time and part-time staff across the UK.
Stephen Lynn, Head of Marketing, said: “Despite Luminar being placed in administration, Liquid on the High Street will continue to trade and provide the clubbers of Uxbridge the best night out for the foreseeable future.”
He added: “There are rumours we are trying to shut the clubs down. The clubs are open and will be trading today, this weekend, and going forward.”
Philip Bowcock, Finance Director of Luminar Group Holdings, issued a statement on Wednesday, October 26 confirming that the banks will not extend their original 3-month waiver on the repayment of an £85million debt facility granted on 11th May. The original repayment deadline was Thursday 27th October.
Without the waiver, Luminar is unable to meet its repayment obligations.
The statement said: “The Directors of Luminar have no option but to take steps to place the Company and certain of its subsidiaries into administration and to request the UK Listing Authority to suspend trading in Luminar’s shares with immediate effect.”
This year Liquid Uxbridge held more student nights, including live DJs and other performers, to appeal to a younger audience. The club’s core market of 18-24 year olds have less spare cash for nights out with rising youth unemployment and less economic security, while students are paying higher tuition fees.
The company recently introduced cocktail bars by the clubs, brought in a wider range of beers and held live music and comedy events in all their venues to appeal to more mature customers, but it didn’t turn the business around. The company said the August riots had a material impact on trading and that profit margins had been squeezed with more promotions.
Shares in Luminar Group Holdings crashed by 30% at the close of trading on Wednesday, having fallen more than 600p over the past five years.
The company issued a series of profit warnings over the past 2 years. The last came in July when Luminar had a 12% fall in like-for-like sales.
Brunel University students will be pleased to know that Liquid and Envy in Uxbridge says it has no plans to close this weekend and will be going ahead with Halloween celebrations as planned. It is not known what the future of the club beyond the weekend will be.
Three teenagers, two aged 18 and one aged 17, have been released on bail after a 17-year-old boy was stabbed in a nightclub in Southall on Thursday night.
The victim, who has not been named, was attending an under 21s night at the Tudor Rose, a Caribbean club, when he was attacked at around 23:30.
He was taken to hospital with a minor stab wound to the chest and was released the following day.
The victim’s mother claimed to be disgusted by the club’s lax security in a situation which could have turned fatal.
In a statement, she said: “My son went to a club in Southall and they allowed people to go in there with a weapon.
“He’s never, ever been in any trouble with the police – he’s a law abiding citizen, people can vouch for that. The doctors said luckily he moved in a certain way so it’s just a superficial stab wound, but I could’ve lost my son last night.
“He was a bit shaken up but he’s OK now, you’ve just got to move on. I can’t stop him going out but I won’t let him go there again.
“Councillors have been trying to shut the place down. The owners keep calling it racism, but I’m a black woman, it’s about protecting peoples’ children”.
The teens, who were arrested following the incident, have been bailed and are due to appear in court on November 18.