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Friday 30th July 2021
Exclusive: TriSpan in talks to acquire Pho
Exclusive – TriSpan in talks to acquire Pho: Private equity firm TriSpan is in talks to acquire a majority stake in Vietnamese street food restaurant group Pho, Propel has learned. Pho, which was founded in 2005 by Stephen and Juliette … view
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Friday 30th July 2021
Friday Opinion
Subjects: Two tribes go to war, holistic is hard but there is no planet B, why it’s time to get emotional about data, behavioural science
Authors: Paul Chase, Hamish Stoddart, Victoria Searl, James Odene

< … view
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Friday 30th July 2021
Pandemic cost hospitality £100bn in sales
Pandemic cost hospitality £100bn in sales: Hospitality businesses have suffered a £100.2bn drop in sales from pre-pandemic levels in the 15 months since the start of the covid-19 pandemic, the latest edition of the UKHospitality Quarter … view
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Friday 30th July 2021
Propel Friday News Briefing
Oakman paid just under £3m for six ex-Seafood Pub Co sites: The Oakman Group paid under £3m to acquire six former Seafood Pub Company sites earlier this year, Propel has learned. The Dermot King-led group paid £2.94m in total, includin … view
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Thursday 29th July 2021
Mitchells & Butlers – sales have been volatile
Mitchells & Butlers – sales have been volatile: Mitchells & Butlers has described sales as volatile in the weeks since reopening. In a Third Quarter trading update, the company stated: “On 12 April we initially opened 16% of our estat … view
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Thursday 29th July 2021
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Findlay – wave of consolidation in the pubs sector expected: Marston’s chief executive Ralph Findlay expects a wave of consolidation in the pubs sector as firms rethink strategy in an environment with “a lot of US money around”. E … view
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Wednesday 28th July 2021
JKS Restaurants to relaunch Arcade Food Theatre with new operators
JKS Restaurants to relaunch Arcade Food Theatre with new operators: JKS Restaurants, led by Karam, Jyotin and Sunaina Sethi, is to relaunch the Arcade Food Theatre in London, as the Arcade Food Hall, complete with new operators – as the comp … view
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Wednesday 28th July 2021
McDonald’s reports second-quarter global like-for-like sales up 6.9% on 2019 levels with ‘strong’ UK growth
McDonald’s reports second-quarter global like-for-like sales up 6.9% on 2019 levels with ‘strong’ UK growth, digital sales from top six markets almost $8bn: McDonald’s has reported global like-for-like sales were up 40.5% in its second … view
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Wednesday 28th July 2021
Marston’s – trading since 17 May better than expectations
Marston’s – trading since 17 May better than expectations: Marston’s has reported significantly improved trading since 17 May – described as “better than our expectations”. The group’s entire 1,500 pubs have been open since … view
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Wednesday 28th July 2021
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Costa trials combined hot and iced drinks machine in ‘world first’, Pret potentially eyeing vending category launch: Costa Coffee, which is owned by Coca-Cola, is trialling a new line of coffee machines across selected locations in Br … view
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Tuesday 27th July 2021
Robinsons now trading profitably after navigating ‘incredibly challenging year’ with turnover down £26m
Robinsons now trading profitably after navigating ‘incredibly challenging year’ with turnover down £26m: North west brewer and retailer Robinsons has said it is now trading profitably after navigating an “incredibly challenging yea … view
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Tuesday 27th July 2021
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
US investment funds among bidders for Hawthorn: A pair of US-based investment funds were among the final bidders for community pub company Hawthorn, Propel has learned. On Monday (26 July), Admiral Taverns announced it had agreed to acqui … view
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Monday 26th July 2021
Hawthorn sold to Admiral Taverns for £222.3m
Hawthorn sold to Admiral Taverns for £222.3m: NewRiver REIT has entered into an agreement to sell its community pubs business Hawthorn Leisure REIT to Admiral Taverns for £222.3m. Allan Lockhart, chief executive of NewRiver, said: “Ov … view
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Monday 26th July 2021
Propel Monday News Briefing
Gilkes – we need a test and release scheme or the next three weeks are going to be long and painful: Charlie Gilkes, co-founder of Inception Group, the London-based group, which owns and operates concepts including Cahoots and Mr Fogg … view
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Monday 26th July 2021
British workers now make up more than half of sector’s workforce with EU staff at lowest level since at least 2016
British workers now make up more than half of sector’s workforce with EU staff at lowest level since at least 2016: British workers now make up more than half of the sector’s workforce with the proportion of EU staff at its lowest level si … view
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Sunday 25th July 2021
Weekend leisure stories and restaurant reviews
Nightclub bosses ready to take government to court over covid vaccine passports: Hospitality industry leaders have warned the government it could face legal action over plans for compulsory vaccine passports for nightclubs and other “l … view
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Saturday 24th July 2021
Bridgepoint lines up potential £500m sale of Burger King UK
Bridgepoint lines up potential £500m sale of Burger King UK: Bridgepoint, the private equity group behind Burger King UK, is holding talks with bankers about plans to begin an auction of the fast-food chain – worth an estimated £500m – a … view
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Friday 23rd July 2021
Friday Opinion
Subjects: How micro-bonuses have helped to revolutionise our operation, back to the bar, the sector that creates special memories
Authors: James Hacon, Glynn Davis, Ann Elliott

How micro-bonuses ha … view

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Friday 23rd July 2021
Propel Friday News Briefing
I am Doner introduces ‘micro-bonuses’, sees increased productivity and 90% drop in customer complaints: I am Doner, the Think Hospitality-backed brand, has introduced “micro-bonuses” for its staff. The company said the move had be … view
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Thursday 22nd July 2021
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Collins – we come out of the crisis with a better-balanced estate, fixtures and fittings supply chain ‘sluggish’: Nick Collins, chief executive of cafe bar operator Loungers, has said the business is coming out of the crisis with a … view
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Wednesday 21st July 2021
Market Halls to launch £1m crowdfunding push
Market Halls to launch £1m crowdfunding push: Market Halls is to launch a £1m crowdfunding campaign with Seedrs. The company stated: “With over 2.3 million visitors across our three sites since opening in 2018, Market Halls was on track to … view
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Wednesday 21st July 2021
Loungers reports like-for-like sales up 23.7%
Loungers reports like-for-like sales up 23.7%: Loungers has reported like-for-like sales up 23.7% in the nine weeks from 17 May to 18 July 2021 versus the same period in 2019. The company said it is benefiting from post-covid trends, flex … view
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Wednesday 21st July 2021
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Brinker International plans UK launch for Chili’s restaurant brand, scope for in excess of 100 sites: US restaurant group Brinker International is looking to launch its casual-dining concept Chili’s into the UK and believes it could o … view
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Tuesday 20th July 2021
Young’s – we’ve been trading at 95% of 2019 levels
Young’s – we’ve been trading at 95% of 2019 levels: London pub operator Young’s has reported trading at 95% of 2019 levels. In an AGM statement, chairman Stephen Goodyear said: “We are pleased to report that trading has continue … view
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Tuesday 20th July 2021
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
Sector bosses lambast government over move to make full vaccination mandatory for nightclubs and large events, PM warns requirement may be needed in pubs: Sector bosses have lambasted the government after it announced full vaccination wil … view
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Monday 19th July 2021
Zahawi – nightclubs for fully vaccinated only from end of September
Zahawi – nightclubs for fully vaccinated only from end of September: Vaccines minister Nadim Zahawi has announced people will be required to be fully vaccinated to attend “large crowded settings” such as nightclubs from the end of Septem … view
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Monday 19th July 2021
ONS – bar and clubs hit hardest by pandemic and consumer spending still below 70% of pre-pandemic levels
ONS – bar and clubs hit hardest by pandemic and consumer spending still below 70% of pre-pandemic levels: While hospitality has been “hit hard” by coronavirus, bars and clubs have fared the worst and consumer spending is below 70% of pre … view
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Monday 19th July 2021
Stonegate files £845m covid lawsuit against insurers
Stonegate files £845m covid lawsuit against insurers: The UK’s largest pub group Stonegate is suing a trio of insurers for losses it suffered during the pandemic, one of the highest-profile cases yet in a bitter dispute between the hos … view
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Monday 19th July 2021
Propel Monday News Briefing
Rolling 12-month sales down 27%, but June provides cause for optimism as sales near 2019 levels: Sales at Britain’s managed pub, restaurant and bar groups in the 12 months to June 2021 were down by 27% on the previous 12 months, highlig … view
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Monday 19th July 2021
Rolling 12-month sales down 27%, but June provides cause for optimism as sales near 2019 levels
Rolling 12-month sales down 27%, but June provides cause for optimism as sales near 2019 levels: Sales at Britain’s managed pub, restaurant and bar groups in the 12 months to June 2021 were down by 27% on the previous 12 months, highlighting … view
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Sunday 18th July 2021
Weekend leisure stories and restaurant reviews
Calls grow for new laws to put an end to restaurant bosses pocketing tips intended for staff: Tough new laws are being demanded to stop unscrupulous restaurant bosses pocketing tips intended for staff. Campaigners say about 1.6 million ho … view
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Friday 16th July 2021
JD Wetherspoon outlines measures from 19 July as it removes ‘absurd’ table-only service restriction
JD Wetherspoon outlines measures from 19 July as it removes ‘absurd’ table-only service restriction: JD Wetherspoon will revert from Monday (19 July) to the measures that were in place in July 2020 after the first lockdown as they are … view
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Friday 16th July 2021
Friday Opinion
Subjects: The perils of political triangulation, entrepreneurial braveness, workforce diversity, why you must bring marketing into your boardroom sooner
Authors: Paul Chase, Glynn Davis, Kate Price, Victoria Searl
view
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Friday 16th July 2021
Update: Covid passports, jobs, The Clink donation, Soho House, McDonald’s and Oakman
Covid passport backlash as pubs and restaurants say they can’t check QR codes: Pubs, restaurants and nightclubs have said they do not have the technology to scan covid vaccine passports. The Telegraph reported hospitality chiefs said th … view
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Friday 16th July 2021
Propel Friday News Briefing
Government launches strategy to support reopening and recovery of sector: A new strategy to ensure the UK hospitality sector “can thrive long-term and adapt to consumer demands” has been launched by the government. The Build Back Bett … view
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Friday 16th July 2021
Government launches hospitality strategy, equivalent of 25 licensed premises shut permanently every day in past year
Government launches strategy to support reopening and recovery of sector: A new strategy to ensure the UK hospitality sector “can thrive long-term and adapt to consumer demands” has been launched by the government. The Build Back Bett … view
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Thursday 15th July 2021
Update: Sector urged to use covid passports, Just Eat and Soho House
Restaurants, pubs and bars urged to consider using covid passports and continuing table-only service: Covid passports could be used in pubs, bars and restaurants as new government guidance for businesses urged their wider rollout. On Wedn … view
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Thursday 15th July 2021
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Sugar and salt tax for sector businesses proposed as part of national strategy: A sugar and salt tax for hospitality businesses is being proposed in the second part of the National Food Strategy that calls on the government to commit to a … view
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Thursday 15th July 2021
Salt and sugar tax proposal, pubs’ recovery threatened
Sugar and salt tax for sector businesses proposed as part of national strategy: A sugar and salt tax for hospitality businesses is being proposed in the second part of the National Food Strategy that calls on the government to commit to a … view
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Wednesday 14th July 2021
Legal Briefing

The tightrope to freedom by Michelle Hazlewood

Hospitality operators throughout England have recently heaved a massive sigh of relief after the prime minister announced “Freedom Day” would take place on 19 July. This is despite the d … view
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Wednesday 14th July 2021
Update: rent situation ‘improving’, SSP Group and contact tracing app
UKHospitality – situation over rent agreements ‘improving’ but stalemate in negotiations for one in five sector businesses: UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls has told MPs the situation over rent agreements is “improving … view
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Wednesday 14th July 2021
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Hostmore exploring QSR opportunities for Fridays, sees scope for 20 63rd+1st sites by 2023: Hostmore, the parent company of Fridays and the 63rd+1st concept, is exploring QSR opportunities for its core brand with service station providers … view
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Tuesday 13th July 2021
BrewDog updates on progress following ‘toxic culture’ allegations
BrewDog updates on progress following ‘toxic culture’ allegations, appoints consultancy to conduct ‘full, unbiased’ review: Scottish brewer and retailer BrewDog has appointed consultancy Wiser to conduct a “full, unbiased” rev … view
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Tuesday 13th July 2021
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
Marks – many of our clubs are pre-sold out for reopening, nine in ten young Brits planning to visit club or bar once restrictions lift: Peter Marks, chief executive of Rekom UK, the UK’s largest nightclub operator, has told Propel the … view
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Tuesday 13th July 2021
Marks – many of our clubs are pre-sold out for reopening
Marks – many of our clubs are pre-sold out for reopening, nine in ten young Brits planning to visit club or bar once restrictions lift: Peter Marks, chief executive of Rekom UK, the UK’s largest nightclub operator, has told Propel the … view
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Monday 12th July 2021
Nightclubs urged to use covid certification but not a legal requirement as restrictions lift
Nightclubs urged to use covid certification but not a legal requirement as restrictions lift: Nightclubs are being urged to require covid certification from their customers, although it would not be a legal requirement. Prime minister Boris Jo … view
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Monday 12th July 2021
Young’s to sell majority of tenanted estate to Punch for £53m
Young’s to sell majority of tenanted estate to Punch for £53m: London pub retailer Young’s has agreed to sell most of its tenanted estate – the Ram Pub Company – to Punch Pubs & Co for £53m in a cash deal. Young’s has agreed t … view
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Monday 12th July 2021
Propel Monday News Briefing
Jones – the crisis has allowed us to re-establish what was important, especially the well-being of our people: Karen Jones, executive chair of Prezzo, chair of Mowgli and Hawksmoor, and non-executive director at Deliveroo, has told Prop … view
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Sunday 11th July 2021
Weekend leisure stories and restaurant reviews
Permanent al fresco dining will form part of Boris Johnson’s ‘levelling up’ drive: Al fresco dining will become the norm and pavement licences made permanent as part of government plans to rejuvenate the high street after the pandem … view
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Sunday 11th July 2021
Exclusive – Tortilla to explore IPO option
Exclusive – Tortilla to explore IPO option: Tortilla, the Quilvest-backed fast casual Mexican concept, has appointed advisers to explore a possible initial public offering (IPO), Propel has learned. It is understood the circa 50-strong, … view
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Saturday 10th July 2021
Exclusive – new sector acquisitions vehicle featuring Justin King planning listing
Exclusive – new sector acquisitions vehicle featuring Justin King planning listing: Epicurean Endeavours, a newly formed hospitality and leisure acquisitions vehicle, which is being backed and advised by former Sainsbury’s chief execu … view
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Friday 9th July 2021
Friday Opinion
Subjects: The bullying bosses, importance of product selection, the whole team must be onside, why you’re probably wasting your time on marketing
Authors: Elton Mouna, Glynn Davis, Ann Elliott, Victoria Searl
view
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Friday 9th July 2021
Propel Friday News Briefing
Emeny – 19 July can’t come soon enough for the sector, invests in ‘winterisation’ projects: Simon Emeny, chief executive of Fuller’s, has said that 19 July can’t come soon enough for the sector as the feel-good factor and sale … view
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Thursday 8th July 2021
PizzaExpress concludes long-term refinancing, transformational year for brand
PizzaExpress concludes long-term refinancing, transformational year for brand: PizzaExpress has announced it has concluded its long-term refinancing with £335m senior secured five-year bonds at 6.75%. At the same time, chief executive David C … view
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Thursday 8th July 2021
Update: Fuller’s, Deliveroo and KFC
Fuller’s managed like-for-like sales for 12 weeks to 3 July 2021 at 76% of 2019 levels: Fuller’s reported its managed like-for-like sales for 12 weeks to 3 July 2021 were at 76% of 2019 levels. Reporting results for the year to 27 Mar … view
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Thursday 8th July 2021
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Burger King UK to trial smaller ‘urban box-style’ format: Burger King UK, the Bridgepoint-backed fast-food chain, is to trial a smaller “urban box-style” format by the end of the year/early 2022, Propel has learned. Propel under … view
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Wednesday 7th July 2021
Update: JD Wetherspoon, Ten Entertainment Group, Barburrito and face masks
JD Wetherspoon reports like-for-like sales down 14.6% on 2019 levels between 17 May and 4 July: JD Wetherspoon has reported its like-for-like sales from 17 May to 4 July, when pubs were fully open, were down 14.6% on 2019 levels. The comp … view
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Wednesday 7th July 2021
Propel Wednesday News Briefing
Reilley – without the abolition of ten-day self-isolation requirements for all those pinged by Test & Trace hospitality will shut down: Without the abolition of ten-day self-isolation requirements for all those pinged by the NHS Test & … view
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Tuesday 6th July 2021
Update: Sector’s £400m boost as social distancing ends, Marston’s, Wahaca et al
Last orders for social distancing gives pubs and restaurants a £400m boost: Prime minister Boris Johnson’s decision to ease social distancing rules sent pub and restaurant shares soaring. Almost £400m was added to the value of the sec … view
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Tuesday 6th July 2021
Propel Tuesday News Briefing
Friska founders step away from business as new owner found: Griff Holland and Ed Brown, the founders of Friska, the Bristol-based healthy eating brand, have stepped down from the business, after a new owner was found for the eight-strong … view
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Monday 5th July 2021
Sector leaders hail plans to lift all restrictions on 19 July as ‘major milestone’ but warn of long road ahead
Sector leaders hail plans to lift all restrictions on 19 July as ‘major milestone’ but warn of long road ahead: Sector leaders have welcomed Boris Johnson’s announcement on the lifting of restrictions as a “major milestone” on Monday … view
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Monday 5th July 2021
Social distancing and table service set to be scrapped in pubs and restaurants from 19 July
Social distancing and table service set to be scrapped in pubs and restaurants from 19 July: Prime minister Boris Johnson is expected to tell people in England that it will be left to their “judgement” to manage coronavirus risks as h … view
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Monday 5th July 2021
Propel Monday News Briefing
Operators – we can’t wait until 19 July for a change in test and trace rules: Sector operators have said they can’t wait until 19 July for changes to be made to the current test and trace rules, which are “making it impossible to … view
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Sunday 4th July 2021
Weekend leisure stories and restaurant reviews
Masks to be ditched – and no more QR codes to enter a pub: The prime minister will reveal plans this week to ditch many of the covid-19 rules that have plunged the hospitality industry into chaos. From 19 July, masks will become volunt … view
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Friday 2nd July 2021
Friday Opinion
Subjects: The tipping point, coming out of the shadows and embracing recovery, it will be a bumpy summer of supply, England’s performance is driving on-trade momentum in the best way imaginable
Authors: Paul Chase, Graeme S … view
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Friday 2nd July 2021
Propel Friday News Briefing
SA Brain markets 99-strong freehold investment portfolio: Welsh brewer SA Brain has placed a 99-strong freehold investment portfolio on the market, Propel has learned. Propel understands the business has appointed property advisers Avison … view
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Thursday 1st July 2021
Double-jabbed Brits won’t have to isolate for ten days if they come into contact with covid victim from 19 July
Double-jabbed Brits won’t have to isolate for ten days if they come into contact with covid victim from 19 July: Brits who have had both jabs will no longer have to isolate for ten days if they come into contact with a covid victim from … view
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Thursday 1st July 2021
Propel Thursday News Briefing
Brasserie Bar Co undergoes restructuring and refinancing, currently trading well above expectations: Brasserie Bar Co, the operator of Brasserie Blanc and the White Brasserie Company, completed a restructuring and refinancing process, whi … view
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