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Morning Briefing for pub, restaurant and food wervice operators

Mon 21st Dec 2015 - Propel Monday News Briefing

Story of the Day:

Charles Wells opens 12th French site with second pub in Paris: Bedford-based brewer and retailer Charles Wells has opened a second pub in Paris – its 12th site in France. The company has launched The Cross of St George in the St George’s district in the north of the city having acquired the site in October, which was formerly French bar/restaurant Le Playoff. The venue has been refurbished and transformed into a traditional English local complete with cask beer cellar and brewery and pub memorabilia. Like its sister pub, The Bombardier in the city, The Cross of St George is serving cask ale and bottled beers brewed at the Charles Wells brewery and offering classic British pub dishes. Charles Wells’ French estate of English-themed pubs spans five French cities. Its managed sites consist of The Elephant & Castle and The King Arthur in Lyon, The Charles Dickens, The Sherlock Holmes, English Country Kitchen and DNA in Bordeaux, The London Town and The George and Dragon in Toulouse, The Robin Hood and The Shakespeare in Montpellier, and The Bombardier and the newly opened Cross of St George in Paris. Charles Wells France managing director Andrea Holton said: “The concept at The Bombardier in the city has been incredibly popular with locals, visitors, students and tourists alike, all flocking to the pub to get an authentic taste of England on their doorstep so we’re excited for the potential of The Cross of St George. Our new site is north of the river in an upmarket area known for great places to eat and drink and we’ll be bringing a true, distinctive English pub to the high street which is sure to stand out from the other bars and brasseries.”

Sky and Propel Christmas Advent Calendar:

Win two tickets to a Barclays Premier League football match in Sky and Propel Christmas Advent Calendar competition: Two tickets to a Barclays Premier League football match are up for grabs (see terms and conditions here) in today’s Sky and Propel Christmas Advent Calendar competition. To be in with a chance of winning, answer the following question: How many dedicated Sky Sports channels are there? a) One b) Three c) Seven. Once you have chosen your answer, you can enter by clicking here. We will announce the winner in tomorrow’s newsletter along with providing the final question and the prize on offer. Congratulations to Michael Wallwork, of the National Reserve Club in Grimsby, who was Friday’s winner of two tickets to a 2016 NFL match at Wembley. Sky has partnered with Propel to give away a fabulous prize each working day until 22 December and there is still a 46-inch HD Smart television up for grabs. Good luck!

Industry News:

Subway shifts advertising approach with new digital campaign aimed at specific consumers: Subway has shifted its advertising approach with a new digital campaign aimed at specific consumers. The company has a new set of online digital shorts featuring comedian Tony Hale, which are aimed at millennials. The campaign, which furthers the company’s #SaveLunchBreak effort, represents a shift in Subway’s ad thinking. Subway chief advertising officer Chris Carroll, who returned to the company this summer after leaving in 2005, told Nation’s Restaurant News: “We need to start doing a better job of activating through social. Don’t be so conservative, and have fun with it. The ads are fun, not safe.” In addition, Subway is currently preparing a new, national broadcast campaign featuring its new agency, BBDO that is expected to roll-out in January. Carroll said all of its ads would come around to the company’s strategic position that its food is fresh and better for consumers. But the broadcast ads will be different from the digital ads featuring Hale, in which the comedian plays an office worker who tries to convince his coworkers to take a lunch break. Subway surveyed workers and found that seven in ten take a lunch break of 30 minutes or less, but younger workers are more likely to take a lunch break of 15 minutes or less. Carroll added. “It’s a new direction for the brand.”

Luke Johnson – ‘reinventing traditional industries can be more exciting than discovering new markets’: Sector investor Luke Johnson has argued reinventing traditional industries can be more exciting than discovering entirely new markets. Writing in the Sunday Times, Johnson said: “A craft that has been around for hundreds of years is the coffee house. Pasqua Rosee opened London’s first such establishment in 1652 on Cornhill in the Square Mile. Later, the forerunners of both the Stock Exchange and Lloyd’s insurance market were initiated in City of London coffee houses. Within 20 years there were more than 3,000 coffee shops across England. The latest incarnation is a terrific business that my partners and I recently backed – the Small Batch Coffee Company. This is Brighton’s leading independent roaster and purveyor of coffee. It offers stylish décor and atmosphere, great coffee and fine service, and is helping to revamp the way in which coffee is sold and consumed. There are a number of these newer, artisan chains being formed by bright entrepreneurs who are creating the next generation of coffee houses. Their success demonstrates that even industries hundreds of years old and seen as passé can be remade anew, thanks to different business models and management approaches. Selling the latest cutting-edge product or service might seem the most obvious opening for would-be entrepreneurs. But one should never overlook the possibilities in classic fields and companies that are ripe for revitalisation.”
BBPA – beer and pub sector on track to meet tough environmental targets: The UK beer and pub industry has made even further progress in its efforts to tackle climate change and other environmental challenges, according to the British Pub & Beer Association’s (BBPA) Brewing Green report. The report found brewers’ energy efficiency rose again, by 1.2% in 2014 meaning there has been an overall improvement of 11.6% since 2008 (base year) and the industry remains on track to achieve its 19% reduction target by 2020. Carbon emissions fell by 1.2% in 2014, with a reduction of 29.2% since 2008, almost reaching the targeted 30% reduction by 2020. Water efficiency rose by 6% in 2014, with a 39% increase in efficiency since 1990, on track to reach the 42% reduction target by 2020. Alongside a host of company case studies, the report also highlighted the success of two BBPA-led industry initiatives: ESOS, a new scheme designed to reduce the costs associated with the new Energy Saving Opportunities Scheme, and Sustain, a major partnership initiative, which is cutting the cost of members’ packaging waste. The association has also called on the government to make sure its recent review of business energy efficiency policy does not disadvantage brewers, at a time when the sector is playing its part in improving efficiency and reducing environmental impact. Writing in the foreword, BBPA chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “The sector continues to invest in innovation and efficiency and it is paying off, with further improvements in water efficiency, another reduction in energy use and more companies moving towards zero waste, so that we remain well on track to meet our strengthened 2020 targets.”

Specialist cocktail bars help drive gin sales past £1bn for first time: A rise in the number of specialist cocktail bars and the increasing popularity of gin among young people are to drive sales of the drink past £1bn for the first time this year. British drinkers will have consumed 29 million litres of gin in 2015, spending £1.04bn, according to Mintel. Sales have grown 40% since 2010 and are expected to hit £1.3bn by 2020. Mintel analyst Chris Wisson told the Daily Telegraph: “The strong performance of gin continues to stand out within the spirits market, and is widely seen as the most sophisticated type of white spirit.” It found 42% of people aged 18 to 34 have drunk gin in the past year, compared with 27% of over-45s. Sales of vodka have increased more slowly – 8% over the past five years, with sales of £3.46bn in 2015. 

Company News:

Burger & Lobster founder – 'we should deliver more than £40m turnover this year, international expansion priority in 2016': The founder of Burger & Lobster George Bukhov-Weinstein has said the company should deliver more than £40m in turnover this year and international expansion is the priority in 2016. The company, which launched in 2011, now has 12 sites in the UK, one in New York and two run by partners in Sweden and Kuwait. Bukhov-Weinstein told The Times the focus next year would be on growing the brand abroad, while the UK sites plus the New York restaurant should deliver turnover of more than £40m this year. He said: "We'll open a couple more sites in the UK in 2016, but we don't want to become super big here, we want to keep a family-run feel. None of this has been planned. We don't have a number of restaurants or turnover figure in mind as a target. We learnt that as soon as you focus on that you lose focus on customers, staff and suppliers, and you lose your essence." 

Tom Sellers to launch new restaurant venture in South Kensington: Tom Sellers, the former Noma head chef behind Restaurant Story in Bermondsey and the Lickfold Inn in West Sussex, is to launch a new venture. Sellers will open Restaurant Ours on the former site of The Collection in Brompton Road, South Kensington, in February. The 120-cover restaurant will comprise a dining room punctuated by three enormous trees, a bar and upper mezzanine. Sellers will oversee the menu with the cooking done by head chef Daniel Phippard, who was previously at Ernik in Moscow and before that London’s Kensington Place.

Whitbread secures licences for two hub by Premier Inn hotels in Westminster, opens second site with slightly evolved format: Whitbread has secured licences for two new hub by Premier Inn sites in Westminster. The company is opening an 137-bedroom hotel in Dacre Street and a 316-bedroom site in Tothill Street – about 150 metres apart as the crow flies. Both licenses were secured without a need for a hearing. Meanwhile, Whitbread has opened its second hub by Premier Inn hotel with a slightly evolved format. The 112-bedroom hub by Premier Inn Tower Bridge has opened in Great Tower Street in London. The company said: “2015 has been a learning curve for our hub by Premier Inn format – we’ve built on the successes of our debut Covent Garden hotel and learnt from our customers’ feedback, keeping our proposition and offer fresh and innovative. The concept has evolved to include three new room types: hub bigger a slightly larger twin room, hub Standard and hub Access.” The Tower Bridge hotel marks the start of a flurry of new openings for the concept with a hotel in Spitalfields due to welcome customers in February followed by the Royal Mile hub by Premier Inn in Edinburgh. The Royal Mile site will be the first hub by Premier Inn situated next to a traditional Premier Inn and the first outside London. A further nine hotels are in the pipeline while the company is on the lookout for other sites targeting connected city-centre locations and high demand “spire towns” such as Oxford and Cambridge.

Inamo to open relocated St James’ restaurant in Covent Garden on 6 January: London-based futuristic restaurant brand Inamo, which is relocating its St James’ restaurant to Covent Garden, will open the new site on Wednesday, 6 January. The Oriental fusion brand, where guests order from illustrated menus projected onto their tables, is moving because the original site, which has now closed, is being redeveloped as part of a new shopping centre in Regent Street. The new restaurant, which offers pan-Asian food drawing inspiration from Japan, China, Korea and Thailand, is set over three floors and onyx and wood have been used to clad the walls. The basement Onyx Bar has its own sushi bar. Marketing director Noel Hunwick said: “This is a high traffic location for us to host Londoners and international tourists, and the layout will work really well in delivering the full Inamo experience.” Inamo also operates at Wardour Street, Soho.
Peterborough-based dessert restaurant Tamu eyeing further sites as it prepares to move to bigger premises in city: Peterborough-based dessert restaurant Tamu is eyeing further sites as it prepares to move to bigger premises in the city. The company has agreed a 20-year lease on a property in Cowgate, which totals 2,595 square foot and is set over three floors. Its existing restaurant, which is currently located on Broadway, is moving into the new expanded premises following its success in recent years. Salim Remahtullah, of Tamu, told Insider Media: “We are delighted to have secured this property as we look to grow our business. We are looking at a number of other locations in the region as we hope for continued growth in the coming years. Our Peterborough customers can expect to see the Cowgate venue open in early 2016.” Edward Gee from the Peterborough office of agency Savills, which secured the letting, added: “Situated at the heart of Peterborough city centre and benefitting from a prominent position in a popular retail location, the property provides the ideal site for the restaurant to expand into.”

American sandwich company Quiznos opens first north of England site in Newcastle: American sandwich company Quiznos has opened its first site in the north of England in Newcastle. The company, which has two restaurants in London along with another opening in Covent Garden this month as well as sites in Watford and Bromley, has launched at Cobalt business park. Quiznos owner Ricky Sehgal told Bdaily: “My inspiration for bringing Quiznos from Denver, Colorado, to Cobalt was to provide something different with an affordable and delicious menu. It’s a great global brand to bring to the park. Currently in 43 countries, Quiznos have been sandwich-toasting fanatics since 1989 when it opened its first store. Everything gets toasted and every order is made to order whilst you wait.” The diverse tenant line-up at Cobalt includes a 4,000 square foot Tesco Express store, which anchors the central parade of shops, Greggs, and Spud & Lettuce, Cobalt business development manager Lynn Cramman added: “Due to the outstanding success of the scheme, further developments to cater for the obvious demand from food and beverage operators are being considered.”

Jack Daniels owner reports turnover and profit rise: Jack Daniels and Southern Comfort owner Brown-Forman Beverages has reported an increase in turnover and profit before tax. The company saw turnover increase to £310.2m in the year ended 30 April 2015, compared to £284.3m the year before, according to accounts filed with Companies House. Profit before tax was also up at £38.1m, compared to £35.1m the previous year.

Camerons opens new Head of Steam pub in Norton: North east brewer and retailer Camerons Brewery has brought its Head of Steam pub brand to Teesside with the opening of a new venue on Norton High Street. Located at the site of the brewery’s previously run tenanted pub Perry’s, The Head of Steam is the sixth venue in the Camerons premium cask and craft brand. The Head of Steam pubs are known for its diverse range of premium cask and craft beers from local and worldwide brewers as well as a high end selection of wines, spirits and cocktails. It offers five cask ales with a focus on local breweries alongside 14 keg beers and lagers, five of which will rotate offering customers a diverse range of world beers. Customers will also be able to taste Sleeping BrewTea, a new tea infused pale ale thanks to a collaboration with Middleborough’s Olde Young Tea House. Longhorns BBQ Smokehouse will be offering American-style barbecue foods, including ribs, wings, barbecue boards and sandwiches from today (Monday, 21 December). Camerons director and general manager Chris Soley told GazetteLive: “Norton has established itself as one of Teesside’s most exciting new areas for food and drink, and it is the perfect fit for our Head of Steam brand. We feel our venue will complement the other fantastic bars and restaurants in Norton and attract more customers to the area.”

Brunning & Price opens new acquisition in Surrey: The Restaurant Group’s Brunning & Price gastro-pub brand has reopened a pub in Betchworth, Surrey, which it bought in the summer, following an extensive refurbishment. The company acquired the Jolly Farmers in Reigate Road from Jon and Paula Briscoe and closed the site in July. It has now reopened the pub, which dates back to the 1920s, under the new name of The Pheasant after revamping the site, reports the Dorking & Leatherhead Advertiser. As part of the renovation, a new kitchen and a manager’s flat have been installed at the pub along with a rearrangement of the car park. Brunning & Price said the pub restaurant has undergone extensive refurbishment to create “stunning cosy interiors with open fires, wooden floors, traditional furniture and pictures, and a well-stocked bar”.

Elle R Leisure to invest £1m in refurbishment of Manchester bar: Elle R Leisure is investing £1m in a major refurbishment of Dukes 92 in Castlefield in Manchester city centre to mark the bar’s 25th anniversary next year. A former stable block for horses that pulled the barges up Rochdale Canal, the building was converted into a bar in 1991. It will move into its temporary home – a tipi outside the bar – for three months from Saturday, January 2, while the work is done. The 6,000 square foot space will be stripped back to brick to reflect its industrial heritage and softened with hotel lobby style furniture. The focal point will be a 50-foot long main bar, and trees and foliage will extend right through the building to an extended covered terrace, with dining throughout. There will also be a private dining room to seat up to 14 people with its own outside private terrace. Managing director James Ramsbottom told the Manchester Evening News: “This project is the culmination of 12 months of careful planning. We are fortunate to have a fantastic building in an amazing location so it’s crucial we create a space that works just as well for laid-back lunches as it does on Saturday nights. I’m looking forward to revealing our new look in the spring.”

SSP extends contract at Budapest Airport: UK-based transport hub foodservice specialist SSP Group has cemented its partnership with Budapest Airport in Hungary by extending its contract. The new deal will see SSP’s Flocafe in Terminal 2B refreshed and upgraded with 32 square metres of additional seating. In the coming months, and as part of the expansion, the Gundel restaurant will be converted into a long open-plan bar serving a diverse range of food and beverages. In addition, the Hippo restaurant will be transformed into an O’Leary’s sports bar serving casual dine-in meals accompanied by the best of TV sport. The airside outdoor terrace will also be upgraded to enable its use throughout the year. Budapest Airport chief executive Jost Lammers said: “I am delighted to celebrate our ongoing partnership with SSP Hungary. The continued contract will see some major developments and upgrades of facilities helping to keep Budapest Airport in the top tier of wide variety, and best value, retail airport experiences in Europe. SSP is a reliable, valued, and close partner, delivering up-to-date food and beverage choices for the ever-growing number of passengers using the continually improving Budapest Airport.”
New Yorkshire-themed cafe, bar and deli opens in Leeds: A new Yorkshire-themed cafe, bar and deli has opened in Leeds. Anton Welburn and Emily Youell have launched Wapentake in Kirkgate. It sells beer and cocktails as well as breakfast to eat-in or take away and even has its own artisan bakery. Welburn told the Yorkshire Post: “We’ve got a whole fridge dedicated to Yorkshire beers and will have Yorkshire spirits such as Masons Gin. We’re using Kirkgate Market to get a lot of the food so we are going to be as local as we can be.” Wapentake is based in an 18th-century building that was a former cloth merchant’s home. It has been given a new lease of life after a £110,000 investment from the Lower Kirkgate Townscape Heritage Initiative, financed by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Leeds City Council.

£75m leisure scheme including eight restaurants in Ashford gets go-ahead: A £75m leisure scheme including eight restaurants proposed for a vacant brownfield site in Ashford, Kent, has been given the go-ahead. Developer Stanhope has secured planning permission for its Elwick Place scheme, which is also set to include a cinema, hotel and 280 new car parking spaces, reports Insider Media. The 6.4-acre site, opposite Debenhams, was originally part of the location of the town’s cattle market. The plans were first outlined by Stanhope in July and, following a public consultation, an application was submitted to Ashford Borough Council. The first phase of Elwick Place includes a six-screen cinema, a 60-bed family hotel and eight restaurant/bar spaces. The development is expected to create approximately 250 new jobs. A second phase, which consists of up to 200 apartments, will be considered by the council early next year.

Chiquito and Frankie & Benny’s apply for licences to open at Newcastle shopping centre: The Restaurant Group brands Chiquito and Frankie & Benny’s have submitted licensing applications to join the growing list of eateries opening in the new £25m dining space at the Intu Eldon shopping centre in Newcastle. The two brands have applied to take up units inside Grey’s Quarter, the refurbished Sidgate and High Friar Malls at the complex, which is due to open next autumn. They have applied for licences to start from September 1 next year, with plans to open from 8am to 12.30am, reports GazetteLive. Frankie & Benny’s, which will also have an entrance on Nelson Street, will take up a 5,490 square foot unit with room for 156 covers across the restaurant, bar and terrace areas. They will join a list of operators including Tapas Revolution, Handmade Burger Co, TGI Friday’s, Giraffe and Casual Dining Group brand Bella Italia who will be among 20 food operators going into the dining space.

Plans submitted for new micro-brewery and bar in Letchworth: Plans have been submitted to turn a vacant cafe in Letchworth, Hertfordshire, into a micro-brewery and bar. Holly-Anne Rolfe has applied to North Herts District Council to covert the former Aly’s Diner into the Garden City Brewery. The brewery would produce traditional English ales, heritage brews and US-inspired craft ales, with the main brewing equipment visible from the drinking area but separated from the public by a serving bar. Rolfe told The Comet: “We feel Letchworth really needs somewhere relaxed and intimate to have a drink in the evening with a friendly, open, contemporary feel and, most importantly, somewhere that brews its own ales. We really believe it will help rejuvenate not only The Wynd but also the entire town centre, offering the customer greater diversity and helping to make Letchworth a more vibrant place for all. It really feels, with the new theatre plans coming to fruition at the Broadway Cinema and developments like the Premier Inn getting the go-ahead, like Letchworth’s on the up – and we’re very keen to be a part of that.” Letchworth Garden City Foundation portfolio manager Matthew Foulis added: “The brewery is an exciting concept which will bring something new and interesting to the town. As well as brewing their own ales and craft beers, they will also be selling a range of drinks and food. With the necessary consents, the brewing process will be well under way by the spring.”

Personalised coffee service Eight Point Nine passes 50% mark in £150,000 crowdfunding drive: Personalised coffee subscription service Eight Point Nine has passed the 50% mark in its £150,000 fund-raise on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube. The company, founded by Phillip Clarke and Chris Hewitt, has delivered over £50,000 bags of coffee since launching four years ago and is offering 16.67% equity in return for the investment. So far, 54 investors have pledged a total of £81,130 with 22 days left. The largest investment to date is £11,000. The pitch states: “We’ve been really pleased with sales growth over the last 12 months, but we’ve barely scratched the surface. We believe that our co-brand partnerships will deliver us significant volumes of new customers. We need to invest now to maximise the opportunity and maintain our momentum. Having self-funded the business, we plan to invest in expanding our core team beyond the founders, to continue developing our technology platform (investment in mobile, social and our flavour-matching algorithm) and to invest in customer retention and advocacy. Revenues over the last 12 months exceed £110,000, and we believe we can achieve £694,000 in the next forecast year.” The company is forecast to make a pre-tax loss of £121,000 in year one, a profit of £202,000 at the end of year two and £1.1m in its third year. 

Extra MSA preparing to submit plans for £50m motorway service station on M1 near Leeds: Motorway services group Extra MSA is preparing to submit plans for a £50m scheme south east of Leeds city centre – a decade after being refused. The company wants to build the site, which could create 300 jobs once operational, alongside a huge residential-led development of 1,800 houses on a near-70-acre plot next to junction 45 the M1. A similar application was first lodged in 2000 but refused five years later following an inquiry by the government. However, the company is confident its latest proposals will be successful, with a service station at the Skelton Gate junction described as “well placed” to meet road safety needs, helping to reduce fatigue related accidents on this section of the motorway network. A full planning application is expected to be submitted next year and, if successful, it’s hoped the project could be opened in autumn 2017. Extra MSA chief executive Andrew Long told Insider Media: “This is a unique opportunity to facilitate and complement the adjacent new housing proposals for east Leeds, as well as supporting the development of the Aire Valley Enterprise Zone and the overall objectives of the Aire Valley Area Action Plan.”
Pub People Company and Jennings Brewery team up to raise funds for Cumbria Flood Appeal: The Pub People Company and Jennings Brewery have teamed up to raise funds for the Cumbria Flood Appeal with a 20p donation for every pint sold. South Normanton-based Pub People Company has nominated Jennings Brewery as its “brewery of the month” and will be selling a range of Jennings’ beers in 25 selected pubs throughout this month. As Jennings is based in flood-stricken Cockermouth, Pub People Company has decided to donate 10p of every pint sold to the Cumbria Flood Appeal, which will also be matched by Jennings Brewery. Pub People Company’s operations director Andrew Crawford said: “After we heard about this month’s flooding we knew we had to do something to help those affected – linking up with our brewer of the month Jennings seemed obvious and we really hope we can get a big donation together to help those in need.”

Beannchor Group gets go-ahead for £4m hotel in Belfast: Northern Ireland pub, restaurant and hotel company Beannchor has been given the go-ahead for a £4m hotel in Belfast. The company will start work on the 58-bedroom Bullitt hotel this week, which will create 100 new jobs when it opens as early as next spring. The hotel will be based on the corner of Victoria Street and Ann Street at the old Lagan House building. Conall Wolsey, of Beannchor Group, said the hotel’s vision is to “bring a new and exciting hospitality concept to Belfast and Northern Ireland”. He told the Belfast Telegraph: “This is much more than a hotel – it’s a space that will be relevant to the modern day lives of our customers, a space led by design, technology and efficiency, all in a friendly atmosphere, with the food, drinks and service that Beannchor is renowned for within the hospitality industry.” The plans also include the addition of an extra storey to the building to provide another ten bedrooms. The complex will also include a public work space with desktop computer access for residents and non-residents, high speed Wi-Fi and charging points for phones. It will also feature a ground floor restaurant with a courtyard garden.
Sheffield leisure group acquires holiday park company: Sheffield leisure group Laver Leisure has bought holiday park company Stevensons Golden Sands. Following the acquisition, Laver Leisure now has 12 parks accommodating more than 1,800 holiday homes in and around the Skegness area. Stevensons Golden Sands’ main asset is the Golden Sands holiday home park at Ingoldmells in Lincolnshire and its owners want to move on from the business. The beachside leisure park, launched in the 1950s, can accommodate more than 400 holidaymakers, and is next to another Laver-owned property, The Wolds. Laver Leisure is a member of the Arnold Laver Group of companies, which is a 95-year-old company. Mark Bower, of Laver Leisure, told The Business Desk: “The family has always strived to provide holidaymakers with the best possible experience with a quality offer alongside the fantastic Ingoldmells beach. When the opportunity to purchase arose, it was obvious that Golden Sands was an excellent fit for Laver Leisure. The Golden Sands staff will be joining Laver Leisure and we very much welcome them into our family business as well.” Simon Stevensons, from Stevensons Golden Sands, added: “We’re immensely proud of what Golden Sands has offered holidaymakers over several generations. However, now is the time for the family to move on. In Laver Leisure we have a respected purchaser who will take the park forward for future generations.”
JetChill breaks into UK market with casino deal: Theatrical drinks system manufacturer JetChill has broken into the UK market following a deal with Caesars Casinos. The installation will see dry ice chilled smoking shots and cocktails served at Caesars sites across the UK. It comes on the back of overseas system installations by the Newcastle-based company with international casino chain Genting and USA nationwide restaurant chain Dave & Busters. Jetchill, which has designed and manufactured the world’s first dry ice drinks machine, is looking to bring Vegas-style theatre to UK venues. The company, which launched the JetChill Machine in 2014, has 300 systems installed in 25 different countries around the world.
Itinerary unveiled for second Propel and Thinking Drinkers Craft Beer Retail Study Tour: The itinerary has been unveiled for the second Propel and Thinking Drinkers Craft Beer Retail Study Tour. The event, which this year focuses on south London, takes place on Thursday, 28 January and will visit seven of the capital’s leading craft beer retailers in an eight-hour period. It starts at the Four Thieves brewpub in Battersea, owned by Laine Pub Company. The tour will then visit hybrid craft beer and bottle shop We Brought Beer in Clapham Junction, which was founded by former BrewDog employee James Hickson, followed by the Craft Beer Co site in Clapham Manor Street. The next stop will be the Crown & Anchor in Brixton run by London Village Inns before heading to independently operated Stormbird in Camberwell Church Street, which was runner-up in the Timeout Love London Awards this year. The tour then continues to Late Knights Brewery’s micro-pub Beer Rebellion in Gypsy Hill and ends at Utobeer’s The Rake in Borough Market. The tour will again be led by Thinking Drinkers, award-winning beer writers Ben McFarland and Tom Sandham, who will provide the latest craft beer facts and figures, market segmentation, analysis and spot up-and-coming trends. The day includes lunch and breakfast and travel between venues by coach. Tickets are £345 for Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) members and £395 for non-ALMR members. To book, email
Final panel line-up confirmed for Propel and Elliotts Advanced Marketing Masterclass: The final panel line-up for the inaugural Advanced Marketing Masterclass has been confirmed. Elliotts strategy and development director James Hacon will leads a discussion with newly appointed Thai Leisure Group marketing director Iain White-Duncan, ETM Group group marketing manager Zoe Knowles and Greene King partnership director Russell Danks about where they see success, their plans for the future and other topics discussed throughout the day. Propel is partnering leading sector public relations and marketing firm Elliotts for the event, which takes place on Thursday, 14 January at One Moorgate Place in London. The day will provide an insight into all aspects of marketing including contributions from Novus Leisure and Brazilian barbecue restaurant Cabana about some of the marketing initiatives they have used to improve results for their business. It will also include the best ways to recognise and tell a brand’s story to maximise its PR or social media potential and how to develop and deliver effective digital initiatives. There will also be the latest insight into consumers’ behaviour to help companies develop marketing strategies around their customers as well as how to brief and work with an agency effectively. Tickets are priced at £295 for Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) members and £345 for non-ALMR members and are available by emailing Adam Dickinson on 
ALMR National Restaurant Association Study Tour to Chicago opens for bookings: The Propel and Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) 2016 Chicago Study Tour is now open for bookings. The trip, sponsored by CPL Training and Sky, takes place between Thursday, 19 May and Monday, 23 May 2016. The National Restaurant Association (NRA) draws 58,000-plus industry professionals from all 50 states and 100 countries, seeking the newest innovations and up-to-the-minute information about trends and issues. The ALMR trip provides: insights from industry experts on the rise in fast-casual dining, social media, new and emerging brands, menu development, staff management and a host of other issues – with 70 free education sessions at the NRA show. It also involves two tours of Chicago’s hottest concepts and a market overview briefing sessions from US experts. Paul Charity, managing director of Propel Info, said: “The NRA show combined with our tour of Chicago is a fantastic opportunity to find fresh inspiration and understand the emerging trends shaping the fast-changing US market.” To get more information or to book, email

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