Change at the top at Leelex as it plans more bars

Paul Lane asparagus

Leeds-based bar and restaurant operator Leelex has restructured its top management team as it prepares to open new sites including one in London.

Paul Lane (pictured), who has been a director for 12 years, is taking over as managing director from Ged Feltham who founded the business in 2000.

Ged will continue to play an active role in the running of Leelex, focusing on new business development, and as managing director of the company’s global brand Portobello Road Gin.

The changes come as Leelex develops plans to open several new sites in various cities in the coming months including London. Details are to be revealed “soon”.

Leelex operates bars and restaurants such as Pintura Kitchen & Bar, Cielo Blanco, Jake’s Bar & Still Room, Neon Cactus and Oporto in Leeds and Portobello Star in west London. It currently employs 145 staff and has reported a turnover of £6.2m, predicted to reach £8.2m this year.

Paul started with Leelex 15 years ago as manager of the company’s first success story, Oporto, which he turned from a quiet, run-down venue to one of the stars of Leeds’ bar scene. He previously worked at The Leodis, members club Teatro and the Bingley Arms in Leeds.

He is also a director and shareholder in Portobello Road Gin, playing a hands-on role in selecting the asparagus as a botanical for the brand’s new limited-edition gin (pictured).

Ged said: “I’m confident that Paul will be invaluable in his new role to continue the development of Leelex Ltd’s bar and restaurant portfolio. His experience and passion for the job is second to none.”

Paul added: “I’m excited to become managing director at what is a very exciting time for the company and its brands. My intention is to continue to drive sales growth and help the business to continue to deliver an outstanding experience to our customers.”

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