JD Wetherspoon chairman Tim Martin has sold 4.37m of the Company’s ordinary shares, at a price of £11.50, netting him £50m, but reducing his holding in the company to 21.88%.

The sale of the shares, which took place yesterday (26 January), “was in response to significant buying interest following the company placing last week”, said the pub operator.

Last week the business raised £93.7m in new equity following a share placing, which it said would strengthen the company’s balance sheet and help provide a buffer against low sales upon reopening. The investment would also be used for acquisitions in London.

Martin has agreed to a lock up arrangement on his remaining 28,174,709 shares, that runs until the release of the announcement of the company’s full year results for the 52 weeks to 25 July 2021, which are expected to be published in September.