November delivers sales uplift for pub and restaurants

14/12/2017 - 08:52
Collective like-for-like sales in the UK’s managed pubs, bars and restaurants grew by 2.2% in November compared to last year, a significant uplift on results from the previous six months of the Coffer Peach Business Tracker.

Pub groups produced the best figures with collective like-for-likes up 2.8% while the performance of restaurants also improved with an increase of 1.2%.

London, were lfl sales across the sectors were up 0.9%, was outperformed by the rest of the country where sales rose by 2.7%.

November’s more positive outlook comes after respective declines of 2.1% and 3.2% in October and September.

“November’s numbers will be welcome news for a sector that has been hit hard this year with rising cost pressures across property, people and food, all squeezing operational margins,” said Peter Martin, vice president of CGA, the business insight consultancy that produces the Tracker, in partnership with Coffer Group and RSM.

Total sales growth in November among the 38 companies in the Tracker cohort was 5.9%, compared to November 2016.

Last month's upturn in results been put down to the continuing but subdued effect of new openings, which Martin said have “slowed significantly over the past year, particularly among restaurant brands.”

“For the first time in years, managed pub and bar groups are opening new sites at a faster rate than casual dining companies,” he said.

Underlying like-for-like growth for the sector, for the 12 months to the end of November, remained unchanged, running at 1.2%, with total sales growth over the 12 months steady at 4.1%.

Trevor Watson, executive director, valuations, at Davis Coffer Lyons, said: ”It seems the reduced rate of new restaurant openings is helping to sustain like-for-like comparisons.

“The figures are somewhat stronger than some commentators were fearing, which will hopefully translate to some pleasing results over the festive period and that there will be some reasons to be cheerful as we enter the busiest trading season.

“The figures are a particular relief for restaurant operators, who over the last two years have seen their underlying like-for-like growth rate cut by more than half due to competition from start-ups concepts and new brands who have increased choice for consumers in UK market towns and major cities.”

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