Bimbo: Brunswick Street, Fitzroy bar sells to Australian Venue Co
Iconic Fitzroy bar Bimbo has sold to new owners in a swift off-market deal.
Australian Venue Co – the hospitality group behind 34 Melbourne pubs including European Bier Cafe, The Provincial, The Smith and Beer DeLuxe – purchased the leasehold of the late-night venue.
JLL Hotels & Hospitality vice president Will Connolly said it took just “a matter of days” to sell the renowned business on behalf of vendors Colonial Leisure Group.
“I can’t provide a (sale) figure but the vendors are extremely happy with the result and we achieved almost the full asking price,” Mr Connolly said.
But the agent said he was unsure what the new ownership would mean for Bimbo’s beloved $5 pizzas, drinks menu and eclectic decor – known for its kewpie baby doll on the venue’s facade.
“Given how the venue operates, I can’t see them changing a whole lot in the short-term,” he added.
The venue was fully renovated in 2018 after a fire caused significant damage to the upstairs level of the Brunswick Street building.
Mr Connolly said Australian Venue Co saw the business as a ‘turnkey’ operation, complemented by a valuable 3am late night liquor licence and favourable lease terms.
“We approached the sale with an off-market strategy approaching specific targets,” he said.
“It’s a really positive sign for the market given how quickly the venue was secured, so it just shows the appetite for hospitality and pub operations at the moment.”
“We’ve already seen an increase in interest and transactions themselves in the hospitality sector, as we gradually move to a (COVID-19) restriction free environment.”
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