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Morning Briefing Strap Line
Tue 1st Nov 2016 - Propel Tuesday News Briefing

Story of the Day:

Restaurants under pressure to serve up speed and convenience as ordering in and eating out figures soar: Brits are demanding faster service and more convenient ways to pay when eating out and ordering takeaways for delivery, according to new research by Barclaycard. As dining habits change, the pressure is mounting on restaurant owners to respond with technology that balances both the need for speed with providing a more personalised dining experience, the company said. More than a quarter (26%) of time-strapped UK adults now dine out at least once a week, rising to more than a third (36%) among 18 to 34-year-olds, the research revealed. Meanwhile, one in seven (13%) of consumers admitted to ordering meals from restaurants through online tools and apps such as Just Eat and Deliveroo on a weekly basis. Dining choices are changing mostly for convenience (56%) but also as a result of increased disposable incomes (28%), with restaurant spending reaching a 15-month high, up 14.9% year-on-year in August. The research showed the need for speed is causing customers to become more impatient when eating out, prioritising quick service (37%) over value (21%) and menu choice (33%). Pressure is also mounting on restaurants to offer a range of solutions to speed up the payment process, with consumers more likely to choose venues that offer contactless payments (15%), the option to pre-order and pay via an app for both delivery and eating in a restaurant (15%) or payment via mobile device at the table (14%). Customers are calling for bill-splitting apps or tools for large groups and automatic payment services similar to Uber, where credit or debit card details are stored and payment is taken from the cardholder’s account automatically. Diners would also like restaurateurs to make their experience feel more personal, with a third (33%) more likely to choose somewhere to eat if they receive tailored offers based on personal data they have provided. Barclaycard customer solutions director Sharon Manikon said: “Time is of the essence for today’s busy Brits and this need for speed now seems to be translating to the dining experience. But instead of being a special treat, eating out and ordering food in are increasingly becoming the norm, with consumers turning to restaurants and delivery services to provide quick and easy meal-time options, whether it’s a bite to eat after work or a mid-week takeaway ordered from a mobile device on the move. As the restaurant sector enters a new era of ‘dining-on-demand’, the industry needs to respond with the right technology to improve the service and experience they provide, or risk getting left behind by their more savvy competitors.”

Industry News:

Ten more places released for Propel and ALMR Las Vegas study tour: Ten more places have been released for the Propel and Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) Las Vegas study tour, which takes place between Saturday, 25 March and Tuesday, 28 March 2017. The trip provides two food study tours, where delegates can explore the hottest concepts in Vegas, as well as two early-evening bar tours led by James Hacon. The trip also includes three nights’ stay at the MGM Grand Hotel, two hosted dinners, and the chance for delegates to explore Vegas at their own leisure. Propel managing director Paul Charity said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to gain a valuable insight into the trends and concepts that are shaping Vegas and leading the way in the US market, which will no doubt provide fresh ideas and inspiration for delegates.” For more information or to book, email Jo Charity at or call 01444 810304.

BII People and Training Conference fully booked, waiting list now in operation: The BII’s People and Training Conference on Monday, 21 November at Bafta Piccadilly is now fully booked and a waiting list is being run. The speaker schedule can be found here. Operators can book free places by emailing Anne Steele on Tickets for suppliers cost £149 plus VAT. Bookings have also opened for the National Innovation in Training Awards (NITAs), taking place in the evening at Cafe de Paris. Tickets for the evening event cost £150 plus VAT and can be booked by emailing

London pubs facing business rate increases of more than 40%: London pubs are facing business rate increases of more than 40% over the next five years, putting operators at greater risk of closure or redevelopment – and increased costs on the price of a pint. Hundreds of London pubs, including some of the oldest and best known, face huge increases in rates from April following the government’s revaluation. Across the capital, their bills will go up by 25.6% on average over the next five years – but some central areas will see far bigger rises of 40% or more, analysis for the Evening Standard has found. The national average increase is 9.2%. The pub facing the biggest monetary rise is a branch of the O’Neill’s chain, in Wardour Street, Soho, which owner Mitchells & Butlers will be asked to find an extra £102,000 next year – a 31.5% increase – according to calculations by business rate specialists CVS. Chief executive Mark Rigby said: “London pubs are set for a business rates shock from next April and I won’t be surprised if we see pints getting even more expensive. On one hand, these increases are a sign that the capital’s pubs have been in rude health over the past seven years. However, such a drastic rise in business rates could leave pub operators squeezed and – in severe cases – at greater risk of closure or redevelopment.” Simon Emeny, chief executive of Fuller’s, which has four pubs among the 30 worst-affected in London, added: “This is a significant blow to my firm and the wider pubs industry. Effectively, companies like mine are being punished for ploughing money into London and the south east. We will find a way to absorb the new rates burden and cope, but I fear for some of the smaller operators – it could damage the future of some pubs in London.” Central London pubs bear the brunt. Pubs in Westminster will see their rates rise by an average of 43.2%, closely followed by Camden (39.8%), Southwark (36.4%) and Kensington & Chelsea (35.6%) The only area to see a fall in business rates on average will be Barking and Dagenham (-4.4%). A British Beer & Pub Association spokesman said: “The revaluation of pubs will clearly lead to some big increases in rateable values for pubs, and we have severe concerns about the impact this could have.”

Amount raised by businesses on Crowdcube increases by more than 50%: The amount raised by businesses on the Crowdcube platform has increased by more than 50% during the past 12 months. In total, 137 raises were completed on the crowdfunding platform in the year to 30 September 2016, compared with 127 the previous year. The total amount raised grew by 51% to £86m, from £57m in 2014/15. The average amount raised by businesses was £627,000, up from £449,000, while the number of companies raising more than £1m doubled from 11 to 22. The largest raise completed during the year was Crowdcube itself, which secured £6.7m to support its growth plans. Following the first exit by E-Car Club to Europcar in July 2015, two further Crowdcube-backed businesses were sold in the past 12 months –Camden Town Brewery to Anheuser-Busch InBev and Wool and the Gang to BlueGem Capital. Crowdcube co-founder Luke Lang told Insider Media: “We have seen an increase in the number of raises year-on-year as investors back great British businesses on Crowdcube. The significant rise in the average amount raised by crowdfunding businesses reflects the shift towards more venture and growth stage, often venture capital-backed, businesses turning to Crowdcube to raise finance alongside start-ups looking for seed investment. This is a trend we expect to continue; we have a robust business pipeline and investor appetite remains strong.” Meanwhile, fellow crowdfunding platform Seedrs has reported a record-breaking month, with nearly £20m invested into campaigns on the platform. Among companies to receive investment was M Restaurants, founded by former Gaucho managing director Martin Williams. It raised £1,585,600 from nearly 200 investors to launch its M Social concept and for further expansion plans. The charge was led by Perkbox, the employee and customer engagement provider, which has raised more than £4.1m so far from nearly 300 investors. Meanwhile, the world’s first peer-to-peer money transfer platform WeSwap set a record for the most investors in a single campaign, with nearly 2,400 investors having invested nearly £2m to date.

Boxpark launches first food and drink-only retail development, in Croydon, features 34 traders: Boxpark has launched its first food and drink-only retail development, in Croydon, featuring 34 traders. It has opened the 2,000 capacity site next to East Croydon station, with the line-up including The Breakfast Club, MeatLiquor, Beijing street food specialists Mamalan, Craft Beer Co and Mexican restaurant Chilango, which has opened its first south London outlet. Traders are spread across two floors made up of shipping containers and Boxpark Croydon is open daily from 7am to 11pm, Monday to Saturday, and 8am to 10pm on Sundays. The project is a collaboration between London Borough of Croydon and CGLP, a joint venture between Schroders and Stanhope. Boxpark creator and chief executive Roger Wade said: “I’m delighted to announce the opening of Boxpark Croydon, our first food and drink-only retail development. I would like to personally thank Croydon Council, Schroders, GLA and, most importantly, the local Croydon community for their support. I was born and bred in south London, and it’s great to build a world-class development in my local area. We are not building this in Croydon, we are building for Croydon!”

Horizons predicts margin squeeze in next two quarters: Insights firm Horizons has predicted that during the next two quarters, operators will start to see their margins being squeezed, thereby reversing several years of benign improvement. Food and beverage sales rose 1.8% in the last quarter (to September 2016) compared with 2.1% in the prior quarter. The company added: “We expect inflation to start to affect the foodservice sector in measurable ways in the last quarter of 2016 and the first quarter of 2017.”

Soho House has lost its appeal among glitterati: Soho House has lost its appeal among the rich and famous because it has expanded across the globe, style expert Peter York has claimed. York, who wrote The Official Sloane Ranger Handbook, claimed the exclusive venue had “diluted” its brand by opening multiple branches across Europe and North America. His comments came after accounts showed SHG Acquisition (UK), Soho House’s parent company, recorded an operating loss of £11.8m for the 2015 financial year. “The whole point of private members’ clubs is exclusivity, that they are where the magic people will all gather,” York told The Guardian. “Soho House is a very efficient operation but there is one at every turn now and they have diluted their brand to, I think, their detriment.” The social commentator went on to say there was “nothing special” about the club any more. “They have lost that sheen and that is why it is not where the magic people, the famous people, go any more,” he added. See Below for story on Soho House’s plans in Brighton. 

London Living Wage to rise to £9.75 an hour from next year: The London Living Wage is to rise to £9.75 an hour from next year, Sadiq Khan has announced. The mayor said the voluntary rate in the capital would increase by 35p – well above the National Living Wage rate brought in by the government this year. More than 1,000 businesses in the capital will now pay the new rate after 300 companies, including Ikea, Lloyds TSB and EDF Energy, signed up. Outside London, which accounts for one-third of businesses paying the rate, the rate is increasing by 20p an hour to £8.45. The living wage is different from the new compulsory National Living Wage of £7.20 for adults, rising to £9 per hour by 2020, introduced by George Osborne in April. Khan said it was not just the “right and moral” thing for employers to do, but also made “good business sense”. He told the Evening Standard: “I’m glad to say we’re well on track to see it rise to over £10 an hour during my mayoralty, but we need to go further. Our economy continues to grow and for the first time in London’s history we now have over one million businesses based here. It’s essential that hard-working Londoners, who keep this city going, are rewarded for their integral role in this success. As many employers already accredited know, the benefits are clear – including increased productivity and reduced staff turnover. I’ll be working to encourage more businesses across our great city to get involved.”

Ministers reject calls for 5p charge on disposable coffee cups: Ministers have rejected calls for a charge on the 2.5 billion disposable coffee cups thrown away each year because they believe coffee shop chains are already taking enough action to cut down waste. Environment minister Therese Coffey told the Liberal Democrat party, which has urged the government to impose a 5p charge similar to that levied on plastic bags, that industry and chains were already doing enough voluntarily, reports The Guardian. Starbucks is the only major chain to offer customers a discount, of 25p, if they bring in their own cup. Costa and Pret A Manger give coffee drinkers no financial incentive to reduce the waste created by takeaway cups. Caffe Nero gives customers double stamps on its reward cards for reusable cups. It emerged earlier this year that only one in 400 coffee cups are recycled because they are made of a difficult to recycle mix of paper and plastic. That prompted calls for a charge on takeaway cups by chef and campaigner Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and the then-environment minister, Rory Stewart, and saw Starbucks begin a trial of recyclable cups. Last month a Cardiff University study said the 5p bag charge had been so successful in England that a fee on cups could work too. The research found the bag charge had led people to more willingly embrace other waste policies too, such as a charge on plastic bottles or coffee cups. However, the government said it has no plans to impose a mandatory charge on the cups, which experts recently said would take decades to break down.

Company News:

Soho House committed to £60m Brighton project despite delays: Soho House has said it is still committed to opening a £60m site on Brighton seafront, despite delays to the project. The company had been set to open at Aquarium Terraces in Madeira Drive next spring after being granted planning permission in December. But it is now hoped the first phase of the scheme will open by late summer or autumn 2017. Soho House told The Argus the delay has been down to design modifications with a planning application submitted in recent weeks. It said work would begin in January to convert the lower-tier vacant restaurant into a members’ club, while two new pavilions would be built above to create restaurants and bars, an open air plunge pool and new terraces. Accounts filed with Companies House last week showed Soho House has had an injection of £40m to finance more expansion after a year of increased operating losses. Its parent company SHG made an operating loss of £11.8m in the year to January 31 2016, after including £15.6m of depreciation and amortisation costs, compared with an operating loss of £577,000 in the prior period. The company, which has 60,000 members globally, did make a pre-tax profit of £1.96m, but only thanks to £13.8m that flowed into the business from the sale of a 50% stake in its Pizza East, Dirty Burger and Chicken Shop chain of restaurants to a private investor.

Brew Cafe team to open new all-day dining venture in Kew: The team behind independently owned and operated Brew Cafe will open a new all-day dining venture next month in Kew called Antipodea. The 80-cover restaurant will open in a 1,073 square foot site in The Old Post Office in Station Approach. Agents Restaurant Property advised on the sale of the site, which is close to Kew Station and The Royal Botanic Gardens, with the lease assigned to run until 2019. Antipodea will include favourites from the Brew Cafe menu alongside a selection of wood-fired pizzas, robata grill dishes, daily bakes, and seasonal specials. The group’s new executive chef James Brown has devised an “internationally influenced” menu alongside his partner-in-food at Brew Cafe, Moran Etedegi, who has worked alongside fellow Israeli Yotam Ottolenghi. A takeaway service will offer a selection of Home Brew products with the motto “Made by Brew, Finished By You”, while a retail area will sell produce from the group’s bakery and butchery. As well as wine and cocktail, Antipodea will offer freshly made juices, smoothies and Brew Coffees. Brew Cafe was founded by restaurant entrepreneur Jason Wells, who launched the first site in the UK in 2009 following openings in Melbourne and New York. There are now five Brew Cafe sites in London – at Wimbledon, Clapham, Putney, Wandsworth and Chiswick.

£1.5m Newcastle rooftop restaurant to take Chaophraya brand to the ‘next level’: Thai Leisure Group has said its £1.5m rooftop restaurant, which will open at the new dining area at Newcastle’s Intu Eldon Square complex before Christmas, will take the company’s Chaophraya concept to the “next level”. The opening will create 50 jobs and is thought to involve the highest investment figure for a single site in the city’s restaurant scene. Chaophraya will be in the prime position as one of 20 restaurants opening in the £25m Grey’s Quarter dining area. Thai Leisure Group brand strategy director James Hacon told Chronicle Live: “Our investments into Intu Eldon Square will take our Chaophraya restaurant concept to the next level. Over the past year, we have had a team flying back and forth between the UK and Thailand, with the ambition to make the Newcastle environment a truly inspirational experience for our customers.” Newcastle agency Karol Marketing has been appointed to deliver a launch event and integrated communications campaign for Thai Leisure Group ahead of the opening. Restaurants already open in Grey’s Quarter include Azzurri Group-owned ASK Italian, TGI Fridays, fish and chip restaurant George’s Great British Kitchen and Handmade Burger Co. They will be joined by Smashburger, The Restaurant Group-owned Chiquitos, Tapas Revolution, Reds True Barbecue and Casual Dining Group-owned Bella Italia, among others.

StreetDots debuts street food at Oxford Street Christmas lights switch-on: StreetDots, the team behind London’s growing network of street trading pitches, is to bring 20 street food vehicles to the NSPCC Oxford Street Christmas lights switch-on, for the first time in the event’s history, on Sunday (6 November). The inaugural inclusion of street food at the event showed the extent to which Londoners have embraced this style of eating, according to StreetDots co-founder Atholl Milton. He added: “StreetDots traders serve at a different location every day as they move around our network of pitches across London. Now they have a chance to serve the whole city as it comes together for the West End’s biggest family event.” The line-up, which includes Mexican burrito Daddy Donkey and Wheely Good Coffee, will see traders split into four street food hubs dotted along Oxford Street. The vendor mix is designed to appeal to the family-focused nature of the event from risotto balls, gourmet hotdogs, burgers, wood-fired pizza and falafel. The event marks another milestone in StreetDots’ growth. In September, it opened three street food trading pitches – or “dots” – in London’s Bermondsey Square, taking its total UK network to 30. Once traders have registered with StreetDots they can book on to its dots in a few clicks using the StreetDots “Trade Smart” app.

Innis & Gunn founder – principal aim of £1m crowdfunding campaign is to roll-out The Beer Kitchen brand: Dougal Sharp, founder of Scottish brewer and retailer Innis & Gunn, has told Propel the principal aim of its £1m crowdfunding campaign is to roll-out The Beer Kitchen brand. The company, which was founded in 2003, is offering a 2% equity stake in return for the investment on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube. Innis & Gunn intends to double its turnover to £25m during the next three years and the capital raised through the Adventure Capital campaign will be used to accelerate its immediate growth priorities. Sharp said its main aim was to fund the roll-out of The Beer Kitchen brand, which was launched in Edinburgh in July 2015. It has since opened a second site, in Dundee, while bars will follow in St Andrews next month and then Glasgow, which will house the company’s first micro-brewery, before its first international venue in Toronto, Canada. Sharp said: “We are focused on rolling out The Beer Kitchen in Scotland for the time being. We believe there is plenty of opportunity and it is working fantastically well for us. It is a question of ‘when’ we head south but we need to work out what the right route is for us. We are in ongoing negotiations on a site in downtown Toronto. Canada has long been our biggest market abroad so it makes sense to take The Beer Kitchen there. We will be looking to work with an experienced hospitality partner and, if it is successful, then we will look at other markets.” The company also plans to expand beer production at the Inveralmond Brewery in Perth, Scotland, which it acquired earlier this year and is now to be named the Innis & Gunn Brewery. Production volume is forecast to triple in the next two years to 30,000HL. The company will also install a barrel-ageing hall and new filtration technology that will expand the development, giving it the capacity and capability to “brew some of the beers we’ve not been able to”. Sharp said: “We’ve been brewing since 2003 and we’ve gone on to become one of the biggest craft beer brewers in the UK. Craft beer still only accounts for a fraction of the beer consumed annually. This means we have substantial opportunities for growth. Since we did our mini-bond last year, where we raised £3m, we’ve been having conversations with our investors about another crowdfunding campaign. With Adventure Capital, we are building a community of like-minded, passionate beer lovers who care deeply about quality, innovation, flavour and integrity. We can’t wait to begin the next chapter of our journey with them.” Since its foundation, Innis & Gunn has reported continued year-on-year volume and sales growth, with an annual group turnover of £12.5m in 2015 – a 36% increase since 2012. In 2015, Innis & Gunn sold more than 23 million bottles of beer globally.

BrewDog reveals international plans for 2017: Scottish brewer and retailer BrewDog has revealed its international plans for 2017, which include a hunt for bar sites in the US and its first European brewpub. The company said its Equity for Punks USA fund-raise had attracted more than 3,000 US investors, with three states “leading the charge” – Ohio, California and Texas. The company added it would start a “BrewDog road trip” during 2017 to uncover locations for new US bars, while first test batches from its new brewery at Columbus, Ohio, were scheduled for late January. BrewDog is also looking to take its Collabfest multi-venue craft beer festival across the globe in 2017, uniting its bar in Japan with one of the country’s leading craft brewers, with similar possibilities in Brazil and Sweden. Regarding expansion into Europe, BrewDog said: “Europe is very much where it’s at as far as we are concerned. Still our largest export market, the greatest concentration of our non-UK customers, and the continent with the highest number of international BrewDog bars. And we are heading there in a big way. Our increased capacity, thanks to the expansion of our East brewhouse, means more beer for these thirsty markets, and we are also working on ways to reduce shipping costs imposed on us by courier firms. Plus we are looking at not just more bars, but a new way of having BrewDog beer abroad – our first European BrewDog brewpub. We have a city in mind for this, but we will keep it under wraps for now. 2017 is set to be a huge, colossal, fantastic year for everyone here at BrewDog.”

McDonald’s UK paid Luxembourg arm £123m in franchise rights last year: The British arm of McDonald’s paid £123m for “franchise rights” last year, as part of a structure that is under investigation for enabling unfair tax avoidance. The European Commission launched a probe last year into whether Luxembourg’s tax arrangements for McDonald’s amounted to illegal state aid, as part of a broad crackdown on companies that route money through subsidiaries to cut their global tax bills. Luxembourg-based McD Franchising Europe, which employs 14 people, reported turnover of $1bn and profits of $540.6m last year from royalty payments generated around the region. The European Commission has said it has “virtually not paid any corporate tax in Luxembourg nor in the US on its profits since 2009”. The firm said the royalty payment is “given careful consideration, based on arm’s length principles, and is benchmarked externally against OECD-approved methods. We have a constructive relationship with HMRC and are in discussion with them on this matter. McDonald’s complies with all applicable tax laws including the timely and accurate payment of taxes that are owed in the UK.”

David Muñoz opens long-delayed StreetXo restaurant in Mayfair: Three-Michelin-starred chef David Muñoz has opened his restaurant StreetXo in Mayfair, London, following a series of delays. The new restaurant in Old Burlington Street is Muñoz’s first outside his home country of Spain, where he runs DiverXo and StreetXo restaurants, both in Madrid. London’s StreetXo was originally set to open in June 2014 but has been beset by delays, some connected to construction issues. The StreetXo menu takes inspiration from European, Asian and South American cuisines but Muñoz also told Hot Dinners that most dishes have “either a Mediterranean or East Asian backbone”. Cocktails include Liquid DiverXO (jasmine, coconut vinegar, lime, ginger and violet essence), and The Smoker USA (aged rum, lime juice, cola, cranberry juice, mandarin tea and ginger). The lower ground-floor restaurant features a bar at the front and restaurant at the rear, with all tables facing an open kitchen.

Hammerson reveals £5.7m plans to revitalise The Riverside dining and leisure hub in Reading, Comptoir Libanais to open at complex: Owner Hammerson has revealed £5.7m plans to revitalise its dining and leisure hub, The Riverside, at The Oracle shopping centre in Reading. Central to the regeneration project will be a new 167 square metre fully glass-fronted pavilion that will be home to Comptoir Libanais, the Lebanese canteen specialising in fresh Middle Eastern dishes. The regeneration project will be delivered in two phases. Phase one will deliver the new pavilion and reconfiguration of The Riverside’s terrace steps to create a larger public space that will be ideal for performances, kiosks and pop-ups. The second phase will deliver the second tranche of public realm works. Hammerson head of restaurants and leisure Sarah Fox said: “Welcoming a restaurateur of such calibre as Comptoir Libanais to The Riverside is testament not only to The Oracle’s already well-established dining offer, but also our vision for its regeneration. The Oracle has continued to successfully attract new and exciting brands to Reading. This next stage of development for the centre will help meet the demands of today’s discerning shopper, and by boosting the already vibrant dining and leisure offering it will only serve to entice other international brands.”

The Flour Station to launch permanent site in Camden this week: Bread Holdings, the parent company of Gail’s Bakery and artisan baker The Bread Factory, and which is part-owned by Luke Johnson’s Risk Capital Partners, will open a first permanent site for its sourdough brand The Flour Station this week. The Flour Station began in 2002 in the kitchen of Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen restaurant before expanding to at least eight markets across London. Now it will open an all-day cafe at Stables Market in Chalk Farm Road, Camden, on Wednesday (2 November) offering its most popular baked goods, including salted chocolate brownies with hazelnuts, and scones filled with tomato, basil, onions, spinach and cheese. The breakfast menu will include sharing platters and a breakfast pudding featuring layers of croissant soaked in vanilla custard and fruit. Chris Honor, best known for cafe concept ChrisKitch, will supply salads for the lunch menu, which will also feature Scandinavian open-faced rye sandwiches, and sticky toffee brioche buns, Hot Dinners reports. The Flour Station will also offer British charcuterie from Cannon & Cannon, Neal’s Yard Cheese and Borough Wines. The dinner menu will feature more sharing platters and beer from Toast Ale, which The Flour Station works with to transform waste bread into beer.

Small Batch chief executive steps down to pursue other interests: Nigel Lambe, chief executive of Brighton and Hove coffee chain Small Batch, which is majority owned by sector investor Luke Johnson, has stepped down to pursue other interests. Lambe has been involved with Small Batch Coffee for six years and took over as chief executive last November. He remains a shareholder – he owns 16% of the company. He told The Argus: “Most of the businesses I have been involved in have been turnaround situations, and I just felt it was the right time to move on.” Lambe said he would be focusing efforts on his two other main business interests – Brighton Gin, where he is executive chairman, and as non-executive director at the Sussex Innovation Centre. He is also involved in a couple of new startups. Small Batch Coffee launched out of an industrial unit in Brighton and Hove ten years ago. It now has eight retail outlets across the city and has just opened a new store in Portland Road, Worthing. The team sources and roasts about 100 tonnes of beans a year from the Goldstone Villas headquarters in Hove and is opening a new roastery in Portslade in 2017, which will also house the Brighton Gin distillery. 

Fuller’s on-trade sales director steps down: Fuller’s on-trade sales director Simon Treanor has stepped down – he has taken voluntary redundancy after a review of the Beer Company’s board structure. In a note sent out yesterday, he stated: “I am writing to advise that I have decided to leave Fuller’s by way of voluntary redundancy following a review of the Beer Company Board structure. I have had three and a half very enjoyable years at Fuller’s and I know I am leaving the sales team in some very capable hands.” 

Waxy O’Connor’s celebrates 21st anniversary this week: Waxy O’Connor’s, the Irish pub off Leicester Square operated by Glendola Leisure, marks its 21st anniversary this Thursday (3 November). Alex Salussolia, managing director of Glendola Leisure, said: “We had this large site in the West End and this Irish pub idea, and I thought, ‘let’s be part of that! Let’s have the biggest, most impressive Irish pub in the country’. When you’re inside, you’ve got the warmth, the welcome and the music – and that’s all you need.”

New curry concept Dum Biryani House opens in Soho: Dhruv Mittal, a chef who has worked at The Fat Duck, Hibiscus and Sat Bains, has launched curry concept Dum Biryani House in Soho. As the name suggests, the restaurant in Wardour Street focuses on biryani dishes and Telugu cuisine from southern India. Main dishes include lamb shank biryani with Hyderabadi curry, smoked aubergine raita and a seasonal vegetable biryani (currently wild mushroom, chickpea and baby potato), Hot Dinners reports. The drinks list includes lassi and chahch (salted lassi), alongside Indian lagers and a short selection of wines and homemade, spice-infused cocktails.

Marston’s launches radical image change to attract new generation of drinkers: Marston’s has given its beer brands a striking new look in a revolutionary departure from its traditional imagery in a bid to attract a new generation of drinkers. The company is putting the Marston’s story in Burton, the spiritual home of UK brewing, at the heart of the new campaign. In rejuvenating the positioning and identity so fundamentally, Marston’s is investing more than £1m during the next 12 months on a new assertive position that is “100% Burton”. The range, which includes Marston’s Pedigree and the newly created 61 Deep, will boast new packaging, pump clips, point-of-sale materials and younger tone of voice to convey a compelling meaning behind each of the brand’s stories. And a new consumer campaign, “From Burton With Love”, will depict the brand’s proud Burton roots and brewing back-story using local people scouted from the streets, in everyday locations and situations. In addition to a new beer range, Marston’s brewery will develop its new product development pipeline in “DE14”, a new 600-pint innovation brewery inspired by the brewery’s postcode. Marston’s marketing manager Lee Williams said: “The harsh reality is that, as a brewer, we’re not resonating with the next generation of drinkers who are attracted to the authenticity and simplicity of the new beer scene. For them it’s real and it resonates. Talk to anyone working at our brewery in Burton, though, and you realise we’re no different and share the same passion and love for what we do. So you could say this is just about us presenting ourselves in a new and honest way, as only a true Burton brewery can. We need the next generation to consider our beers, perhaps for the first time, and discover they love the taste too – just as generations before have done, and still do.”

Cafe, bar and nightclub concept Bomo opens in Bournemouth: Cafe, bar and nightclub concept Bomo has launched in Bournemouth. The new venue in Lansdowne is set over three floors and includes a cafe bar with terrace that turns into the Bomo Bunker club at night. Bomo Cafe Bar is open daily offering “tasty light bites” alongside cocktails. Bomo Bunker opens until 4am, with the basement playing underground dance music, the main room featuring garage, house and disco, and the first floor “cosy bar” offering funk and soul. Bomo creator Paul Potter told the Daily Echo: “I wanted to bring the cafe culture to Lansdowne with a twist. A place that by day you can relax, and then you can have cocktails and dance when the sun goes down. It is a place of food, music, art and dance, with an array of entertainment.”

Judy Joo starts Jinjuu expansion with Mayfair launch: Jinjuu, the Korean restaurant concept by chef Judy Joo, has started expansion with the opening of a second central London site, this time in Mayfair. The new venue in Albemarle Street continues Joo’s interpretation of Korean street food as offered at her original Jinjuu site in Soho, which launched last year. There are also some new dishes added, including Joo’s hoe dup bab (slices of raw and fresh seafood with Korean dressing); barbecued skewers of Iberico pork or prime rib-eye steak marinated in Korean barbecue-style sauce; and shaved ice bing su (raisins soaked in rum served with gourmet brownie bites and mango). The drinks menu will include Asian beer, wine by the glass and a cocktail menu with a focus on soju, including the Soju Sour (soju, ginseng spirit, honey, lavender and fresh yuja juice), Hot Dinners reports. Joo also operates a Jinjuu site in Hong Kong.

Neville and Giggs to take hospitality brands global: The hospitality company led by former Manchester United stars Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs is to roll-out its Hotel Football and Café Football brands in mainland Europe and Asia. GG Hospitality will first expand Café Football into central Manchester before opening its first overseas restaurant in Singapore in 2017. Hotel Football – opened next to United’s Old Trafford home in 2015 – will launch its second site overseas at a location as yet unknown. Neville recently announced his intention to not consider football coaching appointments and concentrate on his business interests instead. He told The Business Desk: “It was very important for us to prove our brands worked in the UK before considering expansion and, following on from the success of Café Football and Hotel Football Old Trafford, we’re now in a strong position to introduce our brands to a global audience. We have several exciting developments nearing completion in Manchester that we’re looking forward to launching, both later this year and into 2017, but we’ve always said we’re an ambitious team and we’re looking forward to the challenge that launching our Hotel Football and Cafe Football brands in new countries presents.” GG Hospitality is co-owned by Neville, Giggs and Singaporean-based Rowsley. The company is also involved in developing a luxury, 200-bedroom hotel – separate from the Hotel Football brand – in the £200m mixed-use St Michael’s development in Manchester.

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