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Morning Briefing for pub, restaurant and food wervice operators

Mon 31st Mar 2014 - Breaking News - Orchid reports busiest weekend ever
Orchid reports busiest day in company’s history: Orchid Pub Company has reported Mother’s Day was the busiest day in the company’s history with sales of £866,000. The weekend was boosted by the busiest Saturday in Orchid history the day before, with sales of £762,000. Top performing pubs on Sunday 30 March included: Moby Dick (Great British Carvery) in Romford – £14,000 (net); Mons (GBC) in Bootle – £11,500; Young Pretender (GBC) in Kings Langley – £10,500; Spirit of Endeavour (All Inns) in Boston – £8,500; Three Nuns in (All Inns 2-4-1) in Mirfield – £7,800. Highlights for the company and divisions include: +10.9% like-for-likes with Mother’s Day 2013; +22% like-for-likes at All Inns; +20% like-for-likes at Great British Carvery pubs; and +16% like-for-likes at Thai Dragons. The company sold more than 23,000 carveries and more than 32,000 glasses of wine. “Each year we plan bigger and better activity around key calendar dates as part of our Magnificent 7 initiative,” said Orchid Group commercial and people director Simon Dodd. “We run activities around seven opportunities in the first half of the year, and then a further seven in the second half, and results are always outstanding.” The concerted effort to push for increased covers and additional sales on such days has brought in some great figures, including Orchid’s best-ever Christmas trading in 2013 with more than 8% like-for-like growth. “Customer spending is tight, but on key dates like Father’s Day, Easter, Bank Holidays and so on customers are keen to celebrate with their family and often choose a pub as a relaxed and enjoyable place to do so without breaking the bank,” Dodd added. “The key to our continued success is clear – well-planned events and the right consumer offer flawlessly executed by exceptional managers and their teams. Our next Magnificent 7 push is Easter and we hope to break a few more records!”

London pub entrepreneur Gareth Lloyd-Jones adds prime London pub to portfolio: London pub entrepreneur Gareth Lloyd-Jones has added The Bridge pub in Barnes, West London to his portfolio. The pub was assigned by agent Colliers International, on behalf of the Administrators of The Town & Country Pub Limited. Lloyd-Jones, who also operates neighbourhood dining pubs in London, including The Canonbury, The Hansom Cab, The Spencer & The Althorp, said: “We have acted promptly to add another fine pub property to our portfolio. The Bridge in Barnes is an excellent house with more potential over the medium term. We look forward to welcoming new and existing customers back, after completing a short period of refurbishment. Plans will include enhancing: the garden, internal dining room, kitchen and drinking areas.” Ross Kirton, director of Colliers International said: “There has been a lot of interest in the Town & Country Pub estate since we brought it to market in October, especially in the London sites which were all located in sought after and diverse suburbs. Gareth and his team put forward an offer which proposed to upgrade The Bridge at Barnes ahead of the forthcoming Oxford and Cambridge Boat race, gaining further support from the Star Pubs.”

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