Be At One, the 12-strong London-based cocktail bar chain, has reported a 40% rise in pre-tax profits on turnover up 24% to £8,577,072 in the year to 31 March 2011. Pre-tax profit was £1,165,266 (2010: £831,892), with operating profit up 39% to £1,241,220. The company described trading in the year as “very strong”, with one more site added in the period, in Shoreditch. Be At One said: “The company continued to develop during the year, with one new site being acquired and capital expenditure being incurred on six others at a total cost of £836k. Four more sites are in the pipeline to be acquired during the financial year ended 31 March 2012, subject to the availability of funding. “The balance sheet remained strong, with net assets at the balance sheet of £480k. The net debt after the withdrawal of dividends did not materially change [2011: £1,039,404; 2010: £1,041,597].” Staff costs at Be At One increased £582,312 to £2,375,338, on staff numbers up 24 to 96. No final dividend was paid in the period (2010: £454,500). The interim dividend paid was £489,500 (2010: zero). Private equity group Piper recently took a significant minority stake in Be At One, investing £8m in the business, which values it close to £20m. The investment will aid an aggressive rollout of the brand towards an estate of around 30 sites. It is thought that the main focus in the short-term will be the addition of further sites within London before the chain explores opportunities outside the capital. The operator opened its 12th site this month in Monument and hopes to open a further two sites in the capital before the end of next March. Be At One was founded in 1998 by three former TGI Friday’s bar staff Steve Locke, Rhys Oldfield and Leigh Miller.