Goals in £16.75m push to roll out more five-a-side centres

Goals Soccer Centres has raised £16.75 million to revamp its five-a-side centres in the UK and expand overseas.

Goals is to revamp its UK sites and open a second facility in LA. Picture: Contributed

The East Kilbride-based firm, which has 46 sites across the UK and one in California, said it was considering a move into Asia and other international markets under its new strategic plan.

Aim-quoted Goals has conditionally placed 16.75 million new shares at 100p each, with incoming chief executive Mark Jones agreeing to subscribe to 50,000 shares.

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The company will spend £2.6m on opening a second location in Los Angeles, where its existing Southgate centre is one of its best performers. Former chief executive Keith Rogers relocated to the US in February to oversee its expansion plans on the other side of the Atlantic, and the new site, in Pomona, is due to open in December.

Goals said: “There is an advanced pipeline of four additional potential centres, all situated in the greater Los Angeles area. However, no further centres will be committed to until target returns at Pomona are meeting our expectations.”

The firm is also investing £3.5m on a “catch-up” modernisation programme across 25 of its UK centres, to include new floodlighting and revamped pitches, while £7.9m will be spent on improving reception areas, changing rooms and cafe facilities.

Its investment plans come after Paisley-based rival Powerleague, which mulled a possible takeover approach for Goals in 2012, said recently that it would embark on a major expansion drive that will see it open 13 centres over the next three years, backed by £40m from private equity owner Patron Capital. Powerleague currently has 49 sites.

Last month Goals said that like-for-like sales during the first 18 weeks of its new financial year were “marginally negative”, having fallen by 12 per cent in the second half of last year.

“The board can now report that trading for the first 21 weeks is tracking that same improved trend,” the firm said today.

Earlier this week, Inter Milan chief executive Michael Bolingbroke was named as the company’s new senior independent non-executive director.