RNS Number : 4042T
Ten Entertainment Group PLC
25 March 2021

25 March 2021



Ten Entertainment Group plc


Nick Basing to step away in September




The board of Ten Entertainment has been advised by Nick Basing of his intention to step down as Chairman, a role he has undertaken for six of the twelve years he has been involved with the Company.  A process to appoint his successor will now commence.  It is anticipated that Nick will leave the business in September, following an orderly transition and handover period.


Nick has been instrumental in the development of Ten Entertainment as one of the leading leisure companies in the UK, growing EBITDA tenfold during his tenure and growing like-for-like sales for 8 consecutive years between 2012 and 2020 prior to the onset of the pandemic. Reflecting this performance, at its peak pre COVID, the business was valued at c.£200 million.


He was appointed CEO of Essenden PLC, the forerunner to Ten Entertainment in 2009 whilst an operating partner of Harwood Capital, and Chairman prior to the Company's IPO in 2017.   Initially, Nick, the board and the team recognised the opportunity to reinvent and modernise an outmoded and declining tenpin bowling industry. A strategy was then devised to build a business model around everyday family entertainment and the Company re- positioned to be in the sweet-spot of the emerging new category of "experiential leisure".  The company's venues are now enjoyed by 6 million people every year and over 35% of the nation each year across the industry.


Together with his team, they deployed new technologies; broadened the product offering with the latest gaming machines, table-tennis, karaoke and escape rooms; and significantly upgraded the casual dining experience for guests.  He has overseen the successful buy-and-build strategy of acquisitions delivering consistently attractive returns for shareholders and led recently the new Joint Venture acquisition of Houdini's escape rooms which has further potential for growth. 


He attracted and has helped create a highly-experienced board of directors.  He has guided the company through this difficult last year, stepping into an Executive role heavily focused to ensure a strong and prudent balance sheet.


Nick will remain in his role to ensure that the Group is best placed from the start of reopening.


Nick Basing, Chairman, commented:


"All of my colleagues and everyone involved with Ten Entertainment have been a huge part of my life for the past 12 years.  It has been an extraordinary experience which I am privileged to have enjoyed.  I am humbled to have been entrusted with the leadership of this world-class business.  I am proud that we are regarded as a market leader and have aimed to set the standards in innovation and customer service at every moment.  I believe we are at the sweet-spot of experiential leisure which over the years the team has helped to pioneer.  I am confident to be leaving the business in the excellent hands of our first-class leadership and a strong board.  It has been a great chapter in my life and I have thoroughly enjoyed these last 12 years." 








Julie Sneddon, NED, commented:


'Nick has instilled a caring, inclusive and diverse culture which has been externally recognised. Nick has always shown his passion and ambition for developing talent: three of his protégés have become CEOs of publicly listed businesses themselves and at Ten we are fortunate to have the highly experienced Graham Blackwell as CEO, whom Nick worked with in tandem with for 12 years, at the helm of the business today. 


Christopher Mills, NED and significant shareholder, commented:


"I would like to express my gratitude to Nick. When he joined the Group in 2009, it was by no means certain that the company had a viable future. Through his capable leadership Ten has emerged as a market-leading business which, once things return to a degree of normality, is poised to return to the growth path".



Graham Blackwell, CEO, commented:


"Nick leaves Ten Entertainment in excellent shape and well-positioned to thrive in a post pandemic world.  On behalf of everyone connected to Ten Entertainment, as CEO I would like to express my deepest gratitude for the devotion, hard work and inspirational leadership Nick has shown as both CEO and Chairman of the Group."




Ten Entertainment Group plc

Graham Blackwell, Chief Executive Officer

Antony Smith, Chief Financial Officer


via Instinctif Partners

Instinctif Partners

Matthew Smallwood

Jack Devoy

Tel: 020 7457 2005




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