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Morning Briefing for pub, restaurant and food wervice operators

Wed 5th Aug 2015 - Davy’s buys five-strong El Vino’s business
Davy’s buys five-strong El Vino’s business: London wine bar operator Davy’s has acquired El Vino’s for an undisclosed sum. Both family businesses, their combined heritage spans 281 years in the wine trade, and the deal adds an additional five wine bars to the 25 currently in the Davy’s portfolio and further extends its wine merchant business. Chairman James Davy said: “Purchasing El Vino’s is a logical step for us as we look to expand in an increasingly competitive marketplace. We have purchased a fine heritage brand with great London locations.” Anthony Mitchell, managing director, of El Vino’s added: “We are delighted the El Vino brand will be in such good hands and confident that our customers will enjoy a seamless transition.” El Vino sites are Fleet Street, New Bridge Street, Mark Lane, London Wall and Cannon Street. Davy’s reported turnover increased to £12,293,000 in the year to 29 March 2014, up 3.9% from £11,831,000 the year before. Pre-tax profit climbed 15% to £813,000 from £706,488 in 2012/13.

Loch Fyne Oysters’ losses narrow: Loch Fyne Oysters, which operates a high profile restaurant and oyster bar next to Loch Fyne, has narrowed its underlying losses. The business, based at Cairndow in Argyll, reported turnover of £15.5m in its most recent annual accounts lodged at Companies House. The UK, with revenue of £10.6m, was the biggest market followed by Europe at £2.87m, the Far East on £1.54m and the rest of the world coming in at almost £570,000. While pre-tax losses for the 12 months to October 31, 2014, were £356,909, Loch Fyne said that included a near £154,000 inter-company loan being written off and a £152,000 loss from the Seasalter oyster seed business it owns a majority stake in. Loch Fyne said after stripping out those sums the underlying pre-tax loss was just short of £42,000. The loss for the previous 16-month reporting period, to October 31, 2013, had been almost £617,000 on turnover of £19.6m. Campbell Shirlaw, executive chairman during the financial year, paid tribute to award-winning chef Roy Brett who has revamped the menu at the Loch Fyne oyster bar restaurant but is now concentrating on his own Ondine operation in Edinburgh. Shirlaw said: “We have definitely seen the reversing of the trend of declining sales and customers. The business had to be modernised. People go out to eat and expect different experiences these days. I’m really pleased with what Roy has been able to do taking quite a sophisticated product in seafood, which is generally expensive because of where it comes from, and get it into a package that people like. We were lucky to have him for the time we did.”

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