Imbiba has made an undisclosed ‘seven-figure’ investment in Purple Dragon. The family-focused private members club opens its second site in Putney and Imbiba will support the roll-out of additional sites, both in the UK and internationally.
Purple Dragon was founded in 2008 by former fashion entrepreneur Sharai Meyers, with the current Chelsea site opening for business in 2011. The club has state-of-the-art facilities for music, dance, art, design, cooking, sport and imaginative play for children up to the age of 12, combined with high-quality, informal casual dining and socialising areas for adults.
Sharai Meyers said: ‘We are delighted to have IMBIBA as our partners in the business. Their expertise as an operationally focused investor and their capabilities across operational finance, property, marketing and management provides us with an incredibly strong platform for growth. Knowing that we have the funding in place to push forward the opportunities we’ve been developing over the last year is really exciting. ’
The new club in Putney has the same philosophy and design focus as its big brother in Chelsea, but sits on a smaller urban footprint with a more accessibly-priced membership model. The company plans to roll out both larger flagship sites and other ‘little sibling’ clubs simultaneously over the next five years, depending on local demographics and footprint. IMBIBA has agreed to fund the planned roll-out which is planned across London and rest of the UK, with international roll-out sites already under review in New York and Dubai.
John Connell, Chairman of IMBIBA, said: ‘Purple Dragon is a high-quality business with a strong customer base and great potential for roll-out internationally. Sharai and her team are outstanding operators and the quality of the experience really impressed us. We are delighted to partner with them and help facilitate their growth plans.’ This investment is part of IMBIBA’s strategy to develop leisure and hospitality businesses within key growth and emerging market segments.
Private Membership clubs
There has been a substantial acceleration in UK private club membership over the last five years, including in the family market segment and that trend is clearly starting to be reflected globally. Increasing urbanisation is helping to drive people towards discreet venues outside the home, where they can escape and relax. Purple Dragon is positioned to enable families to enjoy the precious commodity of ‘time together’ in a relaxing, flexible environment. The club provides the familiarity of home comforts with a reliable and consistent ‘quality experience’.
About Purple Dragon
Purple Dragon was founded by Sharai Meyers in 2008. Sharai studied law and then moved into the luxury goods sector, building a fashion brand. Being a mum to young children in central London, Sharai had spotted a need for a place for children to play and have fun in a secure environment, where parents could also socialise and relax and where everyone could eat well together.
Peter Field joined Purple Dragon in April 2014 as Purple Dragon Group’s Chief Financial Officer and Head of Growing Up. A trained accountant, Peter started his career in 1996 at pwc in London, followed by 4 years at a FTSE 100 company in a variety of senior finance and Board level positions.
Purple Dragon is a profitable, high quality operation with an impressive client list of high profile members, excellent membership retention rates and a waiting list across all membership categories, it has generated great latent demand for new venues across London and internationally.
Purple Dragon, 30 Gatliff Road, London SW1W 8DP
PD’s Little Brother, 131 Upper Richmond Road, London SW15 2TR