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Tuesday 31st March 2020
Domino’s hires new UK chief executive
Domino’s hires new UK chief executive: Domino’s Pizza Group has announced the appointment of Dominic Paul as chief executive (designate) in the UK with effect from 6 April 2020. Dominic will join the board as chief executive officer o … view
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Tuesday 31st March 2020
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
Insolvency law changes could protect operators regarding rent: The insolvency law changes alluded to by the government at the weekend could include a debt enforcement moratorium, which would protect landlords and operators regarding non-p … view
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Monday 30th March 2020
Coronavirus: Carluccio's goes into administration, NPD survey, Compass redeploys staff
Carluccio’s goes into administration: Carluccio’s, the Mark Jones-led company, has gone into administration. Geoff Rowley and Phil Reynolds, partners at FRP Advisory, have been appointed joint administrators. Carluccio’s directors d … view
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Monday 30th March 2020
FT – Landlords threaten leisure businesses with legal action
FT – Landlords threaten leisure businesses with legal action: UK property landlords are threatening legal action against hospitality businesses after many withheld rent to save cash during the lockdown, the Financial Times has reported. … view
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Monday 30th March 2020
Propel Monday News Briefing
Banks must provide immediate finance to stop high-street chains going bust: Scores of Britain’s high-street food and drink chains will go bust by the end of April unless banks provide immediate finance, UKHospitality chief executi … view
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Saturday 28th March 2020
Byron and Carluccio’s in failed merger talks
Byron and Carluccio’s in failed merger talks: Carluccio’s, the Mark Jones-led chain, and better burger brand Byron have held emergency talks regarding a merger this week, Propel understands. It is understood Three Hills Capital, which back … view
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Friday 27th March 2020
Carluccio’s prepares to appoint administrators
Carluccio’s prepares to appoint administrators: Carluccio’s, the Mark Jones-led company, is preparing to appoint administrators next week after being forced to close its restaurants amid the pandemic. The company is working with FRP A … view
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Friday 27th March 2020
Leon spearheads £1m NHS staff fund-raise, City Pub Group raises £15m, Casual Dining 2020 cancelled
Sector operators led by Leon launch £1m fund-raise for NHS staff: A funding campaign spearheaded by natural fast food brand Leon and actors Damian Lewis, Helen McCrory and Matt Lucas, has been launched in an attempt to raise £1m to get … view
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Friday 27th March 2020
Friday Opinion
Subjects: Lessons from history, furlough pay, start thinking about supply, and future of public health
Authors: Victoria Searl, Richard Hartley, David Read and Paul Chase

Lessons from history by Vi … view

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Friday 27th March 2020
City Pub Group looks to raise £22m
City Pub Group looks to raise £22m: City Pub Group is looking to raise £22m by way of a Placing to raise £15m and an open offer at 50p a share to raise £7m. The company stated: “The company has taken a number of steps to significant … view
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Friday 27th March 2020
Propel Friday News Briefing
UKHospitality calls on chancellor to urgently clarify details of coronavirus job and emergency funding schemes: UKHospitality has written to the chancellor calling for urgent clarification on the details of the government-backed funding a … view
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Friday 27th March 2020
UKHospitality calls on chancellor to urgently clarify details of coronavirus job and emergency funding schemes
UKHospitality calls on chancellor to urgently clarify details of coronavirus job and emergency funding schemes: UKHospitality has written to the chancellor calling for urgent clarification on the details of the government-backed funding a … view
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Thursday 26th March 2020
TRG places Food & Fuel in administration, files notice to do same with Chiquito
TRG places Food & Fuel into administration, files notice to do same with Chiquito: The Restaurant Group (TRG) has placed Food & Fuel, its 12-strong London-based pub vehicle, into administration and filed notice of intention to do the same with … view
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Thursday 26th March 2020
Opinion – time for everyone to get in the boat by Jonathan Downey

Opinion – time for everyone to get in the boat by Jonathan Downey

The time has come for people to stop fretting over the fine print in the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and get everyone on furlough. Everyone ne … view
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Thursday 26th March 2020
Carluccio's in talks with backer over ‘future survival’, Byron hires advisers
Carluccio’s takes action to give it ‘fighting chance of survival’: Carluccio’s, the Mark Jones-led company, said it is taking actions, including a pay cut for staff and its executive board, to give it a “fighting chance of survi … view
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Thursday 26th March 2020
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Downey – operators shouldn’t give in to landlords’ bullying tactics: London Union founder Jonathan Downey, who is campaigning alongside UKHospitality for government sector concessions, has reiterated calls for a six-month debt enfor … view
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Wednesday 25th March 2020
JD Wetherspoon draws up proposed own rules for government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
JD Wetherspoon draws up proposed own rules for government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: JD Wetherspoon has drawn up proposed rules on how the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) could work and has submitted these to the govern … view
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Wednesday 25th March 2020
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Consumers likely to continue with delivery once crisis has cleared: More than half (53%) of respondents to the latest CGA consumer poll are using or plan to use delivery during the coronavirus crisis, with 13% getting delivery from a rest … view
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Tuesday 24th March 2020
JD Wetherspoon denies ‘abandoning’ staff, further closures
JD Wetherspoon denies ‘abandoning’ staff: JD Wetherspoon has denied it is “abandoning” staff after it was accused of telling 43,000 workers they wouldn’t be paid during the coronavirus crisis until the government reimbursed their wag … view
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Tuesday 24th March 2020
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
Greggs no longer expects to make year-on-year profit progress, cancels dividend: Food-to-go retailer Greggs no longer expects to make year-on-year profit progress as a result of the pandemic. The company had been providing a takeaway … view
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Monday 23rd March 2020
Government extends moratorium on lease forfeiture to commercial tenants
Government extends moratorium on lease forfeiture to commercial tenants: The government has confirmed it has extended the moratorium on lease forfeiture and debt enforcement to commercial tenants. It has made the provision for a three-month mo … view
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Monday 23rd March 2020
Propel Opinion: Marston’s Ralph Findlay on running a closed business

Ralph Findlay shares his thoughts on running a business that has temporarily closed

I am writing to share my thoughts on waking this morning as chief executive of a pub and brewing business that has, in the main, been closed down as part … view
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Monday 23rd March 2020
Coronavirus: JD Wetherspoon backs rent campaign and Network Rail cancels first-quarter payment, Costa to shut all stores
JD Wetherspoon backs campaign for six-month rent moratorium: JD Wetherspoon is backing a campaign calling on the government to impose a six-month moratorium on rent. It is supporting the campaign by restaurateur and Street Feast founder J … view
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Monday 23rd March 2020
Propel Opinion: Will property landlords do the right thing, plus company results

Will property landlords play their part? By Mark Wingett

It is difficult to suggest that this week the UK hospitality sector faces a key final hurdle in its ongoing fight for a future, because I expect more to appear as the impact of the … view
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Monday 23rd March 2020
Propel Monday News Briefing
Luke Johnson – landlords who don’t take a flexible stance to rent call should be named and shamed: Sector investor Luke Johnson has told Propel those landlords that don’t take a flexible approach over the Wednesday’s (25 March) qu … view
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Saturday 21st March 2020
Opinion special: From despair to hope
From despair to hope by Mark Wingett
Something truly amazing happened yesterday. A whole sector was told to closedown indefinitely, but instead of an outcry, there was relief, even some rejoicing. We are truly living in extraord … view
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Friday 20th March 2020
All UK pubs, bars and restaurants told to close, government outlines measures to help pay staff
All UK pubs, restaurants and cafes told to close – tonight: Prime minister Boris Johnson has told all pubs, restaurants, cafes, nightclubs, cinemas, gyms and leisure centres they must close from tonight as the government ramps up measur … view
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Friday 20th March 2020
Coronavirus: Vapiano, Wetherspoon, Fuller’s, Loungers, Pret et al
Vapiano declares insolvency: Vapiano has reported itself insolvent and will apply for government assistance to avoid formally filing for insolvency, blaming the coronavirus crisis for a drop in sales. “Due to the drastic decline in net … view
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Friday 20th March 2020
Friday Opinion
Subjects: Adapting to the outbreak, new channels step up, happy to help, and contact-less
Authors: James Hacon, Dominic Allport, Ann Elliott and Glynn Davis 

Adapting to the outbreak by James Haco … view

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Friday 20th March 2020
JD Wetherspoon results, more closures, PM plea, Leon, Thwaites
JD Wetherspoon reports revenue up 4.9% in first half, cancels interim dividend, sales ‘declining at significant rate’ following PM advice: JD Wetherspoon has reported revenue rose 4.9% to £933.0m for the 26 weeks to 26 January 2020, … view
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Friday 20th March 2020
Propel Friday News Briefing
Sector like-for-likes fall 15% in week before government warning: Like-for-like sales at Britain’s managed pub, bar and restaurant groups fell 15% in the week up to Sunday (15 March) – before prime minister Boris Johnson’s warning t … view
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Friday 20th March 2020
Sector like-for-likes fall 15% in week before government warning
Sector like-for-likes fall 15% in week before government warning: Like-for-like sales at Britain’s managed pub, bar and restaurant groups fell 15% in the week up to Sunday (15 March) – before prime minister Boris Johnson’s warning the pu … view
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Thursday 19th March 2020
Coronavirus: landlord rent gesture, footfall, Greggs, more closures, Star Pubs & Bars
Argent to implement three-month rent-free period, operators call lease forfeiture moratorium: Landlord Argent is to implement a three-month rent-free period from 25 March for all retail, leisure and foodservice occupiers in King’s Cross … view
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Thursday 19th March 2020
Coronavirus update: Young’s, Costa, Byron, Caravan, Rockfish et al
Young’s – we expect closure but will continue to trade for now: London pub operator Young’s is to keep trading for now. It stated: “During these uncertain times our focus is on protecting our staff and customers and supporting our … view
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Thursday 19th March 2020
Propel Thursday News Briefing
BBPA outlines rescue package pubs require as it issues 24-hour warning: The British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) has outlined the rescue package the government needs to enforce to prevent thousands of pubs closing in the next 24 hours. … view
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Wednesday 18th March 2020
Coronavirus: Azzurri Group, more closures, Wetherspoon to stay open, Loungers
Azzurri Group closes all sites to dine-in customers, swathe of sector closures: Azzurri Group, the Ask Italian, Zizzi and Coco di Mama operator, has temporarily closed all its sites to dine-in customers, Propel has learned. From 4pm today … view
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Wednesday 18th March 2020
Coronavirus: UKHospitality warning, footfall, CGA research, Ego, Brasserie Bar Co, Pret, Grind and Oakman
UKHospitality – we have 24 hours to save one million jobs: UKHospitality has urged the government to announce an immediate package of employment support for businesses in the next 24 hours to preserve more than one million jobs as emplo … view
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Wednesday 18th March 2020
Propel Opinion: Too little, too late? Plus company updates

Chancellor’s help is a start but will be too late and too little for some by Mark Wingett

It’s a start, but is it enough and is it for some too late? At 5pm yesterday, it felt like the UK’s whole hospitality sector took a collectiv … view
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Wednesday 18th March 2020
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Government has given sector ‘breathing space’ with £330m support package but further help needed – and urgently: The chancellor’s £330bn package to help businesses gives the sector “breathing space” but further support for e … view
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Tuesday 17th March 2020
Coronavirus: Corbin & King, Mowgli and Center Parcs close all sites
Corbin & King, Mowgli and Center Parcs close all sites: London operator Corbin & King and Indian street food concept Mowgli are the first restaurant companies to close all their sites amid the coronavirus outbreak. Corbin & King said it had cl … view
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Tuesday 17th March 2020
Coronavirus: footfall, Shepherd Neame, Sky, landlord talks, cinemas, Joule’s, McDonald’s
UK high-street footfall down 45%: UK high-street footfall was down 45% on average on Monday (16 March) compared with the previous year as people stayed at home during the coronavirus crisis, according to the latest data from Wi-Fi solutio … view
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Tuesday 17th March 2020
Wetherspoon boss says government approach wrong
Wetherspoon boss says government approach wrong: JD Wetherspoon chairman Tim Martin has criticised the government’s approach to coronavirus. He said: “I believe the government will make a tactical error in resorting to de facto ‘loc … view
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Tuesday 17th March 2020
Propel Opinion: The industry needs help and now

Government needs to support the sector by Mark Wingett

“This government seem to really hate the hospitality sector”. It’s hard to argue with this tweet from last night by Loungers chairman Alex Reilley. In just the past few weeks t … view
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Tuesday 17th March 2020
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
UKHospitality – catastrophic move means government has shut sector without support: The government has effectively shut the hospitality industry without any support by telling people to avoid pubs, restaurants and hotels in the wake of … view
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Monday 16th March 2020
Coronavirus update: Prime minister tells people to avoid pubs and bars, shares slump, Joules’ rent gesture
Prime minister tells people to avoid pubs and clubs but stops short of telling venues to close: Prime minister Boris Johnson has told people to avoid pubs, clubs and other such venues – but stopped short of telling them to close. Johnso … view
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Monday 16th March 2020
Coronavirus: LA and New York on lockdown, Gerry Ford, Starbucks ‘flips’
New York and Los Angeles orders closure of bars and restaurants: The mayors of New York City and Los Angeles, the two largest cities in the United States, have ordered restaurants, theatres, bars and cinemas to close in an effort to slow … view
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Monday 16th March 2020
Propel Monday News Briefing
Licensee Association calls on pub-owning companies to adopt series of measures to support tenants during coronavirus crisis: The Licensees Association, the newly formed association for independent licensees, has called on pub-owning compa … view
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Sunday 15th March 2020
Carluccio’s to seek three-month rent holiday as operators ramp up talks with landlords over coronavirus impact
Carluccio’s to seek three-month rent holiday as operators ramp up talks with landlords over coronavirus impact: Carluccio’s, the Mark Jones-led chain, is to write to the landlords of its circa 70-strong estate to seek a three-month rent ho … view
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Saturday 14th March 2020
UK restaurants see diner numbers decline rapidly as OpenTable data reveals coronavirus impact globally
UK restaurants see diner numbers decline rapidly as OpenTable data reveals coronavirus impact globally: Restaurants in the UK have seen a 20% decline in diners in the past week compared with the same period last year as the coronavirus (c … view
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Saturday 14th March 2020
UKHospitality demands greater government support as businesses face existential threat from coronavirus
UKHospitality demands greater government support as businesses face existential threat from coronavirus with footfall down 30%: UKHospitality has called on the government to step up its support for businesses as the effect of coronavirus … view
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Friday 13th March 2020
Coronavirus update: Downey, McVeigh, Urban, footfall, New York, Grubhub
Sector urges government to follow Germany's lead with unlimited business loans: Sector bosses have urged the government to follow Germany's lead and offer unlimited free loans to businesses to help steer the sector through the coronavirus … view
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Friday 13th March 2020
Friday Opinion
Subjects: Facing down coronavirus, budget reaction, eyes on the bigger prize, a reply to Michelle Hazlewood, and my entrepreneurial journey
Authors: Mark Stretton, Kate Nicholls, Glynn Davis, Paul Chase and Catherine Salwayview
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Friday 13th March 2020
Propel Friday News Briefing
JD Wetherspoon – sales more adversely affected by poor weather than coronavirus, like-for-likes up 3.2%: JD Wetherspoon has said its sales have been more adversely affected by poor weather than coronavirus. In an unscheduled brief tradi … view
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Thursday 12th March 2020
Coronavirus hits high-street footfall by 26%, Casual Dining show postponed
Coronavirus hits high-street footfall by 26%: New data reveals coronavirus (covid-19) has caused a 26% year-on-year drop in footfall on the high street. The figures follow an average 9% fall in February – the first UK case of coronavirus was … view
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Thursday 12th March 2020
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Sector like-for-likes fall 3.3% in February as floods and coronavirus take toll: Britain’s managed pub and restaurant groups saw like-for-like sales fall 3.3% in February compared with the previous year as flooding and coronavirus took … view
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Wednesday 11th March 2020
Legal Briefing

First Scotland, now Wales. Is England next for MUP? by Michelle Hazlewood

Minimum unit pricing (MUP) arrived in Wales this month accompanied by a lot of media coverage trumpeting a Home Office statement that there are “no current plans … view
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Wednesday 11th March 2020
Chancellor announces business rates cut for hospitality firms following coronavirus outbreak, abolished for small companies
Chancellor announces business rates cut for hospitality firms following coronavirus outbreak, abolished for small companies: Hospitality businesses will have their business rates cut this year while small firms will see them abolished altogeth … view
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Wednesday 11th March 2020
Shepherd Neame reports turnover growth in all divisions in First Half
Shepherd Neame reports turnover growth in all divisions in First Half: Shepherd Neame, Britain’s oldest brewer and owner of 320 pubs in Kent and the south east, has reported turnover growth in all divisions for the 26 weeks ended 28 Dec … view
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Wednesday 11th March 2020
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
UK independent cafes see sales grow 1.4% as segment remains ‘agile and resilient’: The UK’s independent cafe market has achieved 1.4% sales growth in the past 12 months, according to new research by Allegra World Coffee Portal. The … view
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Tuesday 10th March 2020
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
UKHospitality calls for immediate wide-ranging business support to deal with coronavirus threat: Sector businesses need immediate and wide-ranging support to deal with the threat of the coronavirus, according to trade body UKHospitality. … view
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Tuesday 10th March 2020
UKHospitality calls for immediate wide-ranging business support to deal with coronavirus threat
UKHospitality calls for immediate wide-ranging business support to deal with coronavirus threat: Sector businesses need immediate and wide-ranging support to deal with the threat of the coronavirus, according to trade body UKHospitality. The o … view
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Monday 9th March 2020
Pub, bar and restaurant closures at lowest rate since early 2018
Pub, bar and restaurant closures at lowest rate since early 2018: Britain’s supply of restaurants, pubs, bars and other licensed premises fell by 1.8% in the 12 months to December 2019 – the lowest rate of year-on-year decline for nea … view
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Monday 9th March 2020
Propel Monday News Briefing
Dunstone to take full control of MOD Pizza UK: Sir Charles Dunstone, the backer of Five Guys UK, is to take full control of MOD Pizza in the UK, Propel has learned. The brand launched in the UK in Leeds in 2016 as a joint venture between … view
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Sunday 8th March 2020
Causeway Capital merges Patisserie Valerie and Bakers + Baristas
Causeway Capital merges Patisserie Valerie and Bakers + Baristas: Causeway Capital has announced the merger of its two portfolio companies – Patisserie Valerie and Bakers + Baristas – creating a “high-quality” patisserie and coffe … view
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Friday 6th March 2020
Sector bosses reveal action being taken to minimise coronavirus risk as industry confidence crumbles
Sector bosses reveal action being taken to minimise coronavirus risk as industry confidence crumbles: Sector bosses have revealed what action they are taking in a bid to minimise the risk of coronavirus as the outbreak continues to spread in t … view
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Friday 6th March 2020
Friday Opinion
Subjects: No time for half measures, putting lazy Brits to work in hospitality, coronavirus concerns, and my learning curve
Authors: Mark Wingett, James Hacon, Ann Elliott and Jamie Campbell 

No t … view

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Friday 6th March 2020
Starbucks reports China sales down 78% in February, but insists impact is temporary
Starbucks reports China sales down 78% in February, but insists impact is temporary: Starbucks has reported that sales at stores open at least 13 months in China dropped by 78% in February compared to the prior year because of temporary store … view
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Friday 6th March 2020
Propel Friday News Briefing
Domino’s – new management team will play crucial role in franchisee talks that are ‘best done away from public arena’: Domino’s Pizza has said its discussions with franchisees to resolve their ongoing dispute were “best done a … view
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Thursday 5th March 2020
Domino’s Pizza reports ‘solid’ full-year performance by UK business
Domino’s Pizza reports ‘solid’ full-year performance by UK business: Domino’s Pizza has reported underlying UK like-for-like sales were up 3.7% (excluding splits) for the 52 weeks ending 29 December 2019, in what it described as a “s … view
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Thursday 5th March 2020
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Peter Backman – emerging grocery food ecosystem is aligning with restaurant delivery: The rapidly emerging grocery food ecosystem is aligning with restaurant delivery to raise a number of interesting questions in the market, industry an … view
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Wednesday 4th March 2020
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Greggs sees scope for all stores to open until at least 7pm, expanding food-led coffee shop format, no coronavirus impact ‘yet’: Roger Whiteside, chief executive of food to go retailer Greggs, has said there’s scope for every store … view
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Tuesday 3rd March 2020
Greggs reports ‘exceptional’ year, plans 100 new openings in 2020
Greggs reports ‘exceptional’ year, plans 100 new openings in 2020: Greggs has reported total sales rose 13.5% to £1,167.9m (2018: £1,029.3m) in the 52 weeks ended 28 December 2019, with company-managed shop like-for-like sales up 9. … view
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Tuesday 3rd March 2020
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
Out-of-town retail park landlords set for rents rethink with 30% of leases about to expire above average market rate: Landlords look set to rethink rent levels at out-of-town retail parks with 30% of leases coming up for renewal fetching … view
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Monday 2nd March 2020
SA Brain puts 40 pubs on market, Benito’s Hat undergoes further restructure
SA Brain puts 40 pubs on the market, one-quarter of estate: Welsh brewer and retailer SA Brain has put 40 pubs on the market – one-quarter of its estate – as part of a three-year plan to “significantly grow the profitability” of t … view
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Monday 2nd March 2020
Propel Monday News Briefing
Experiential Leisure Conference returns with all-new content, open for bookings: The Experiential Leisure Conference is returning – bigger and better – providing new insights and expertise on a trend that continues to have a seismic i … view
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