Celtic Manor

Here for the long game

We meet Mark Colcomb, Vice President, Finance & Support, to find out how Barclays has been supporting leisure operator Celtic Manor’s ambition to expand and diversify since humble beginnings.

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Celtic Manor is a family run business, we have two hotels, four golf courses, a convention centre, exhibition hall, two spas, two leisure clubs, lots of leisure activities.

We’ve got an adventure golf course, we’ve got a high ropes and low ropes course, all spread over a 1400 acre site.

The Ryder Cup is a global sporting event and probably one of the biggest sporting events in the world.

Certainly for anyone who has any interest in sport, it really did put Celtic Manor on the map.

When I joined, which was about 12 years ago, we were predominantly a conference business.

We realised that the best new market to approach was the leisure market but probably more importantly the family market.

Most of the expansions and projects that we take on, we try to seek an element of debt financing to go hand in hand with our own internal funding.

Barclays have been partnering with us since 1980, and really pretty much every project expansion that we’ve taken on since then, Barclays have been very very supportive and have provided an element of debt financing really for all of those projects.

I think the key financial product that we’ve provided is the debt and the working capital to allow us to develop the resort.

I think, obviously from when it was a manor house in 1982 to where it is today through all the various projects, Barclays have very much supported that and helped the Celtic Manor grow.

We also provide the day-to-day banking products, the money transactions, the clearing banking, the Barclaycard facilities.

Over the years that I've been here, we've had three or four different relationship managers, and I cant fault any of them, they've been so supportive, so helpful to the Celtic Manor and I've had a great relationship with all of them.

The good thing about Barclays, is that they are very hands on.

Barclays have been with us every step of the way really.

I think it really demonstrates the longevity of relationships, 35 years we've banked this relationship, and there's been some difficult times, but I think by working together and actually understanding what Sir Terry Matthews and the senior team wanted to achieve, and actually understand those goals and objectives, Barclays have been able to assist and really help them deliver to the fantastic facility you see today.

There's always something next, and the new convention centre with the Welsh government is the key driver I think of what's going to happen over the short and medium term.

Its a great opportunity for everyone in the local area, not just the Celtic Manor to benefit but certainly the Celtic Manor will be looking to make sure that we maximise our benefit from that as as well.

But I think, you know, exciting times ahead.

When Celtic Inns Ltd. purchased a derelict manor house in 1980 near Newport, South Wales, it was difficult to imagine that one day it would become part of such a prestigious development.

From these humble beginnings, the five-star Celtic Manor today boasts numerous hotels, four golf courses, a convention centre, spas, health clubs, adventure golf, a high ropes course, and has a number of new projects in the pipeline.

They’re a very innovative bank and very keen to help us move the business forward.

Mark Colcomb

Vice President, Celtic Manor

Having acted as banking partner to Celtic Manor since the early days, Barclays understands its vision to diversify, and has helped the business achieve substantial growth.

Providing debt and working capital facilities, Barclays has watched Celtic Manor become an internationally recognised development – and a major contributor to the local economy. 

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