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Friday 31st July 2020
Byron sold in pre-pack administration, 31 sites to shut
Byron sold in pre-pack administration to investment vehicle Calveton, 31 sites to shut: Better burger brand Byron has been sold through a pre-pack administration to investment vehicle Calveton UK in a deal that will see 31 of the group’s 51 … view
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Friday 31st July 2020
Itsu launches CVA process
Itsu launches CVA process: Itsu, the healthy Asian food chain created by Pret A Manger co-founder Julian Metcalfe, has confirmed it is to undergo a company voluntary arrangement (CVA), which will see 53 of its 77 sites get a rent cut and only … view
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Friday 31st July 2020
Plans to reopen bowling alleys in England postponed, face masks to be mandatory in cinemas
Plans to reopen bowling alleys in England postponed, face masks to be mandatory in cinemas: Plans to reopen bowling alleys, casinos and ice rinks in England from tomorrow (Saturday, 1 August) have been postponed for at least two weeks amid con … view
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Friday 31st July 2020
Friday Opinion
Subjects: Monopoly moves; thinking the unthinkable; no-show, no worries; and confining compliance paperwork to the recycling bin
Authors: Glynn Davis, Ann Elliott, Catherine Johnstone and David Bashford

view
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Friday 31st July 2020
Propel Friday News Briefing
Gusto appoints adviser, launches accelerated sales process: Italian casual dining group Gusto, which has been backed by Palatine Private Equity since 2014, is working with restructuring advisory firm RSM on an accelerated sales process, P … view
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Friday 31st July 2020
Sector like-for-likes continue to nudge up as more sites reopen
Sector like-for-likes continue to nudge up as more sites reopen: Managed pub, bar and restaurant groups are still trading well below pre-covid norms but are seeing a steady improvement in sales as more sites reopen. The latest Coffer Peac … view
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Thursday 30th July 2020
Fuller’s – the virus has cost in excess of £10m in trading, comfortable with current levels of trade
Fuller’s – the virus has cost in excess of £10m in trading, comfortable with current levels of trade: Fuller’s has estimated the cost of coronavirus on trading at in excess of £10m. The company reported over 75% of its managed pub … view
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Thursday 30th July 2020
Propel Thursday News Briefing
K10 enters into creditors voluntary liquidation: London-based, Japanese restaurant business K10 has become the latest casualty as covid-19 continues to hurt the UK’s hospitality sector. The company has instructed insolvency practitioner … view
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Wednesday 29th July 2020
Pizza Hut Restaurants latest to appoint adviser, CVA an option
Pizza Hut Restaurants latest to appoint adviser, CVA an option: Pizza Hut Restaurants has appointed an adviser as it looks set to become the latest restaurant chain to undergo a restructuring process. Sky News reports the circa 240-strong bran … view
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Wednesday 29th July 2020
Update: TGI Fridays, Starbucks, Young’s, Rick Stein and Loungers
Electra – TGI Fridays exceeding expectations: Electra Private Equity has reported that TGI Fridays sites have exceeded expectations since re-opening. The company stated: “TGI Fridays now has 71 of its 85 stores fully open with a furth … view
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Wednesday 29th July 2020
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Hodgson – covid will separate the wheat from the chaff: Richard Hodgson, chief executive of YO!, the global multi-brand, multi-channel Japanese food group, has said even though the sector was challenging before covid-19, its impact will … view
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Tuesday 28th July 2020
McDonald's reports global like-for-likes down 23.9% in second quarter but picture improving
McDonald's reports global like-for-likes down 23.9% in second quarter but picture improving, 96% of restaurants now reopen: McDonald’s has reported global like-for-like sales fell 23.9% in its second quarter to 30 June 2020 – the first qua … view
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Tuesday 28th July 2020
Update: Corbin & King and Greggs report on trading since re-opening
Jeremy King – we have traded above what we expected: Corbin & King co-founder Jeremy King has told customers that trading has been better than expected since re-opening. In a newsletter, he stated: “I get asked a lot whether we can ma … view
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Tuesday 28th July 2020
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
Weekly like-for-like sales increase another 13.4%: Analysis of sales from operators who were open last week revealed like-for-like sales were up 13.4% on the previous week, with sales of food up 22.2% and drink growing 7.3%. Data from S4l … view
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Monday 27th July 2020
City Pub Group – sales have been 63% of previous levels in first three weeks but we’re profitable
City Pub Group – sales have been 63% of previous levels in first three weeks but we’re profitable: City Pub Group has reported sale 63% of previous levels in the first three weeks of re-opening. Ahead of the Annual General Meeting to … view
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Monday 27th July 2020
Propel Monday News Briefing
We Hear You campaign finds 94% of consumers happy with new pub and restaurant safety measures: The We Hear You initiative, launched earlier this month by restaurant intelligence platform Yumpingo and CGA and backed by UKHospitality, has r … view
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Friday 24th July 2020
Friday Opinion
Subjects: The numbers game, how to stop no-shows, and as much hay…
Authors: Paul Chase, Amber Staynings and Glynn Davis

The numbers game by Paul Chase

I’ve been saying for years that s … view
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Friday 24th July 2020
Propel Friday News Briefing
Pub and restaurant groups in England see trade improve to almost 70% of pre-coronavirus levels: Managed pub, bar and restaurant groups with businesses open in England reported improving sales in the second week after lock-down lifted as m … view
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Friday 24th July 2020
Pub and restaurant groups in England see trade improve to almost 70% of pre-coronavirus levels
Pub and restaurant groups in England see trade improve to almost 70% of pre-coronavirus levels: Managed pub, bar and restaurant groups with businesses open in England reported improving sales in the second week after lock-down lifted as more s … view
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Thursday 23rd July 2020
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Dodo Pizza to relaunch in UK with Roman-style offering, opening first company-owned store in region: Dodo Pizza is set to relaunch in the UK after seeing “modest” sales at its four sites, Propel has learned. The new business model wil … view
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Wednesday 22nd July 2020
Chilango to appoint administrators
Chilango to appoint administrators: Mexican restaurant brand Chilango has said it intends to file a notice to appoint administrators. The company, which underwent a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) in January, has written to investors ahead … view
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Wednesday 22nd July 2020
Update: Gorilla and The Deaf Institute, alcohol, tea and coffee sales, Britvic
Tokyo Industries buys Manchester live music venues Gorilla and The Deaf Institute out of administration: Terms have been agreed for Aaron Mellor’s led Tokyo Industries to acquire The Deaf Institute and Gorilla, previously operated by Mi … view
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Wednesday 22nd July 2020
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Epiris to commit more than £40m of funding to Casual Dining Group: UK-based private equity firm Epiris, which is in exclusive talks to acquire Casual Dining Group (CDG), will commit £43m of funding for the business if a deal is successf … view
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Tuesday 21st July 2020
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
Oakman Inns launches exact copy of Eat Out To Help Out scheme – two weeks earlier and at own expense: Oakman Inns and Restaurants has launched an exact copy of the government’s Eat Out To Help Out campaign – two weeks earlier and at … view
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Monday 20th July 2020
New plans tabled to ensure pubs, restaurants and cafes offer both smoking and non-smoking outdoor options
New plans tabled to ensure pubs, restaurants and cafes offer both smoking and non-smoking outdoor options: People using pubs, restaurants and cafes will soon have greater freedom to choose non-smoking outdoor areas following an amendment … view
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Monday 20th July 2020
Propel Monday News Briefing
Number of parties express interest in Rileys after it appoints administrators: A number of parties have expressed an interest in buying sports bar operator Rileys out of administration, Propel has learned. Rileys, which has appointed Phil … view
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Friday 17th July 2020
Friday Opinion
Subjects: Open the offices, the real hospitality returns, and focus on the new commercial normal
Authors: Ann Elliott, Glynn Davis and David Read

Open the offices by Ann Elliott

I went int … view
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Friday 17th July 2020
TowerBrook acquires Azzurri Group, 75 sites to close
TowerBrook acquires Azzurri Group, injects £70m into business, 75 sites to close: Private equity firm TowerBrook Capital Partners has acquired the Azzurri Group, the operator of ASK Italian, Zizzi and Coco Di Mama, via a pre-pack adminis … view
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Friday 17th July 2020
Propel Friday News Briefing
English venues reopen to weekly sales 40% down on last year but performance better than many international markets: Managed pub, bar and restaurant groups with sites open in England in the first week after lock-down lifted have reported c … view
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Friday 17th July 2020
English venues reopen to weekly sales 40% down on last year
English venues reopen to weekly sales 40% down on last year but performance better than many international markets: Managed pub, bar and restaurant groups with sites open in England in the first week after lock-down lifted have reported c … view
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Thursday 16th July 2020
PizzaExpress draws up plans to close number of sites as part of restructuring process
PizzaExpress draws up plans to close number of sites as part of restructuring process: PizzaExpress, the Hony Capital-backed chain, has reportedly drawn up plans to close about 75 of its 470 UK sites, as part of a restructuring of the business … view
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Thursday 16th July 2020
Loungers to accelerate re-opening, two sites to remain closed
Loungers to accelerate re-opening, two sites to remain closed: Loungers has reported it has re-opened 75 Lounges and 19 Cosy Clubs (from a total estate of 138 Lounges and 29 Cosy Clubs), following the relaxation of the government imposed … view
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Thursday 16th July 2020
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Piper – collegiate nature of the sector will help drive its renaissance, technology use to accelerate: Consumer brand investor Piper, which backs sector companies Turtle Bay, Hickory’s Smokehouse and Flat Iron, has argued the collegia … view
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Wednesday 15th July 2020
Update: McDonald’s, PizzaExpress, MAPAL
McDonald’s unveils price cuts: McDonald’s has recommended price cuts to it franchises in the wake of last week’s VAT cut. Paul Pomroy, McDonald’s chief executive UK and Ireland said: “We have recommended to our franchisees a pri … view
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Wednesday 15th July 2020
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Bulk of Bistrot Pierre business acquired through pre-pack administration: The bulk of the Bistrot Pierre business has been acquired by a new company through a pre-pack administration, Propel has learned. Named after the year the company w … view
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Tuesday 14th July 2020
Update: JD Wetherspoon, Fever-Tree
Wetherspoon rebuts CAMRA and SIBA criticism: JD Wetherspoon has rebutted a number of claims by CAMRA and SIBA in relation to its VAT reduction to customers. A joint statement by Tom Stainer, chief executive of CAMRA, and James Calder, chi … view
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Tuesday 14th July 2020
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
Coffeesmiths Collective undergoes restructure: Coffeesmiths Collective, which runs coffee chains including the Department of Coffee and Social Affairs (DoCaSA) and Filmore & Union, has undergone a restructure, Propel has learned. The comp … view
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Monday 13th July 2020
JD Wetherspoon is to reduce prices on a range of meals and drinks after VAT cut
JD Wetherspoon is to reduce prices on a range of meals and drinks after VAT cut: Pub operator JD Wetherspoon is to reduce prices on a range of meals and drinks following the Chancellor’s decision to reduce VAT on food, coffee and soft d … view
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Monday 13th July 2020
Propel Monday News Briefing
Prezzo seeking £15m of investment to restart business and accelerate growth: Prezzo, the Karen Jones-led chain that earlier this month became the latest sector operator to push the start button on a sale process, is seeking to secure £1 … view
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Sunday 12th July 2020
Epiris in exclusive talks to acquire Casual Dining Group
Epiris in exclusive talks to acquire Casual Dining Group: Epiris, the UK-based private equity firm that formerly backed TGI Friday’s and Parkdean Resorts, is in exclusive talks to acquire Casual Dining Group (CDG), operator of the Café Roug … view
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Friday 10th July 2020
Exclusive: Itsu appoints advisers as it eyes restructure
Exclusive – Itsu appoints advisers as it eyes restructure: Itsu, the healthy Asian food chain created by Pret A Manger co-founder Julian Metcalfe, is understood to have appointed advisers as it looks to step up conversations with landlo … view
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Friday 10th July 2020
Friday Opinion
Subjects: Nothing to fear but fear, customers will be key to success, and making digital ordering work
Authors: Paul Chase, Katy Moses and Nick Popovici

Nothing to fear but fear by Paul Chase

< … view
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Friday 10th July 2020
Update: The Restaurant Group, Great Portland Estate, The Gym Group
The Restaurant Group updates on banking facilities, pay cuts for directors and re-opening schedule: The Restaurant Group (TRG) has announced increased flexibility in its banking facilities and an update on board remuneration and estate reopeni … view
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Friday 10th July 2020
Propel Friday News Briefing
Ford – Caffe Nero saw 10% to 15% jump in revenue when seating areas reopened: Gerry Ford, founder and group chief executive of Caffe Nero, has said the business saw a 10% to 15% jump in revenue when the business reopened seating in its … view
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Friday 10th July 2020
Pubs and restaurants see trade down 45% on reopening weekend
Pubs and restaurants see trade down 45% on reopening weekend: Those managed pub, bar and restaurant companies that reopened sites in England last weekend have reported like-for-like trading 44.5% down on the corresponding weekend last year, ac … view
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Thursday 9th July 2020
Legal Briefing

Let’s stick together by Michelle Hazlewood

As lock-down restrictions are eased further across England, Scotland Wales and we look forward to the sector opening up further, it’s a good time to reflect on the journey of the past four m … view
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Thursday 9th July 2020
Update: Burger King UK, Hawthorn Leisure, C&C Group, pub tenant ‘max exodus’ warning
Burger King UK could permanently shut 10% of outlets: Burger King UK chief executive Alasdair Murdoch has warned up to 1,600 jobs could be lost as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Only about 370 of the company’s 530 UK stores have … view
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Thursday 9th July 2020
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Operators frustrated by slow Welsh approach to reopening: Operators in Wales have expressed their frustration at its government’s slow approach to reopening. First minister Mark Drakeford has said indoor hospitality won’t reopen on Mo … view
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Wednesday 8th July 2020
Tossed parent company files notice of intention to appoint administrators
Tossed parent company files notice of intention to appoint administrators: The parent company of Tossed, the London-based healthy eating brand, has filed a notice of intention to appoint administrators. It follows the directors of Zest Food no … view
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Wednesday 8th July 2020
Operators react as chancellor announces VAT cut and voucher initiative
Operators react as chancellor announces VAT cut and voucher initiative: Operators have hailed chancellor Rishi Sunak’s decision to cut VAT from 20% to 5% on food, accommodation and attractions for six months and launch a vouchers initia … view
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Wednesday 8th July 2020
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Andy Laurillard – there are three waves to this crisis and we’ve just got over the first: Andy Laurillard, co-founder of Thai restaurant brand Giggling Squid, has said there are three waves to the covid-19 crisis and the hospitality s … view
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Tuesday 7th July 2020
Update: Whitbread, JD Wetherspoon and St Austell
Whitbread – we are in a good position to take advantage of structural opportunities: Whitbread has reported it now has more than 270 UK hotels and 24 restaurants now reopened with the majority of the rest of the estate due to reopen thr … view
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Tuesday 7th July 2020
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
More than one-quarter of adults visited a pub or restaurant during reopening weekend: More than one-quarter (28%) of UK adults visited a pub or restaurant during reopening weekend, according to new research from KAM Media. However, the cu … view
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Monday 6th July 2020
Majority of Vapiano’s UK estate acquired out of administration
Majority of Vapiano’s UK estate acquired out of administration: The majority of Italian casual dining brand Vapiano UK has been acquired out of administration in two separate deals, Propel has learned. Allan Graham and Matthew Ingram, of Duf … view
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Monday 6th July 2020
Operators report low-key reopening weekend
Operators report low-key reopening weekend: Operators have reported a low-key start to trading during the weekend, with turnover in many cases well below the corresponding weekend last year. Some companies reported turnover of less than 50% of … view
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Monday 6th July 2020
Pret to restructure and reshape business, 30 sites to close
Pret to restructure and reshape business, 30 sites to close: Pret A Manger, the JAB Holdings-owned group, has announced it will undergo a restructure, which will see 30 of its UK sites permanently close. It comes after the company experienced … view
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Monday 6th July 2020
Sector calls on government for ambitious package of business investment
Sector calls on government for ambitious package of business investment: About 120 industry leaders have written to the prime minister urging the government to commit to an ambitious programme of business support and investment to stimulate th … view
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Monday 6th July 2020
Update: Treasury reviews access to coronavirus business loans, Scottish hospitality reopens outdoors
Treasury reviews access to coronavirus business loans after EU relaxes rules: The Treasury is considering ways of making it easier for businesses to access coronavirus support loans – ahead of expected measures from the chancellor desig … view
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Monday 6th July 2020
Propel Monday News Briefing
Super Saturday – operator reactions and early trading data: Early data from Wi-Fi solutions provider Wireless Social and feedback from operators seem to imply the easing of lock-down regulations on ‘Super Saturday’ (4 July) led to … view
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Saturday 4th July 2020
Exclusive – Tnui Capital to take control of Busaba
Exclusive – Tnui Capital to take control of Busaba: Tnui Capital, the London-based private equity firm, has reached an agreement to acquire Busaba, the Thai chain founded by Alan Yau, Propel has learned. Tnui, which is a turnaround specialis … view
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Friday 3rd July 2020
Exclusive: Wasabi considers funding options including possible sale
Exclusive – Wasabi considers funding options including possible sale: Wasabi, the sushi and bento chain led by Henry Birts and backed by Capdesia, is looking to secure new investment that could include a sale of the business, Propel has … view
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Friday 3rd July 2020
Exclusive: TowerBrook takes lead in race to acquire Azzurri Group
Exclusive – TowerBrook takes lead in race to acquire Azzurri Group: Private equity firm TowerBrook Capital Partners, which has offices in London and New York, is believed to have taken the lead in the process to acquire Azzurri Group, Propel … view
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Friday 3rd July 2020
Friday Opinion
Subjects: One more sleep, why track and trace is key to recovery, in defence of landlords, and restoring control
Authors: Ann Elliott, Victoria Searl, Catherine Johnstone and Malcolm Muir

One more … view

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Friday 3rd July 2020
Exclusive: Bistrot Pierre to file notice of intention to appoint administrators
Exclusive – Bistrot Pierre filing notice of intent to appoint administrators: Bistrot Pierre, the Livingbridge-backed group, is to file a notice of intent to appoint administrators today (Friday, 3 July), Propel has learned. The 25-stro … view
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Friday 3rd July 2020
Update: Market Halls, Boris’ pub plea, Soho House, Fuller’s
Market Halls to remain closed while social distancing remains: Market Halls, which has three sites – in Victoria, Fulham, and on Oxford Street – has begun a redundancy process with staff after deciding to stay closed while social distancin … view
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Friday 3rd July 2020
Propel Friday News Briefing
Phil Urban – M&B discounting unnecessary to entice customers, reduced capacity a bigger issue: Mitchells & Butlers (M&B) chief executive Phil Urban has said the company isn’t planning on widespread discounting to encourage customers b … view
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Thursday 2nd July 2020
91 restaurants close permanently as Casual Dining Group goes into administration
91 restaurants close permanently as Casual Dining Group goes into administration: Casual Dining Group (CDG), the Bella Italia, Café Rouge and Las Iguanas operator, has been placed into administration leading to the closure of 91 of its 2 … view
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Thursday 2nd July 2020
Trade bodies clarify reopening rules for operators and councils
Trade bodies clarify reopening rules for operators and councils: UKHospitality, the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) and the British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) have produced updated FAQ guidance to help operators understand the go … view
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Thursday 2nd July 2020
Mitchells & Butlers – ‘we are encouraged by results at our re-opened German business’
Mitchells & Butlers – ‘we are encouraged by results at our re-opened German business’: Mitchells & Butlers has reported its re-opened German business, Alex, provides insights and encouragement ahead of its UK re-opening this weekend. It … view
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Thursday 2nd July 2020
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Almost 500,000 sector supplier jobs at risk without extended government support: Almost 500,000 jobs are at risk if the government fails to extend sector support to include suppliers, a new survey has revealed. The findings by the UKHospi … view
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Wednesday 1st July 2020
Exclusive: Bidders circle Casual Dining Group
Exclusive – bidders circle Casual Dining Group: A number of parties are bidding to acquire all or part of Casual Dining Group (CDG), the Bella Italia, Café Rouge and Las Iguanas operator, as the company’s advisers continue to push for a d … view
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Wednesday 1st July 2020
SSP to axe up to 5,000 jobs in the UK
SSP to axe up to 5,000 jobs in the UK: UK transport hub foodservice company SSP Group is to axe up to 5,000 jobs in the UK to reflect the current low level of passenger demand – traffic is still down 85% year-on-year – resulting from … view
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Wednesday 1st July 2020
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Hornby – industry needs to be relentless, because it will get harder as the year goes on: Andy Hornby, chief executive of The Restaurant Group, the Wagamama and Brunning & Price owner, has told Propel the industry will need to be “rel … view
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