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Wed 21st Mar 2018 - Propel Wednesday News Briefing

Story of the Day:

Wagamama launches world’s first walk-away payment app: Wagamama has launched a walk-away payment app that will save diners “12 minutes every meal”. Created in partnership with Mastercard, the world first is described as “Uber for diners”. Participants have their details stored securely, with payment taken automatically from the app without the need for a pay button, leaving diners free to get up and leave at the end of their meal without waiting for the bill. When using the app in a restaurant, customers can access added benefits such as super-sizing a fresh juice for the price of a regular drink at a saving of £1; splitting the bill by choosing which items they want to pay for; and order sides, drinks, extras and desserts direct from the kitchen. App users can also order takeaway meals to collect from any Wagamama restaurant. Wagamama customer director Emma Woods said: “We wanted to bring truly frictionless payment to restaurants as we know waiting for the bill is frustrating. Once you’re ready you just go and customers are automatically charged, with the receipt emailed directly. Customers are accustomed to one-click payments for online retailers and walk-out payments from Uber, but there hasn’t been an app offering all these functions for restaurants.” Jennifer Macrae, vice-president of product innovation at Mastercard, added: “We are bringing our digital ordering and payment technology – Qkr – into an app that is tailor-made for Wagamama’s customers. Wagamama is the first to use it in this way, allowing customers to order from phones and simply walk away.” Earlier this month, Wagamama reported 8.2% UK like-for-like sales growth in its third quarter for the 12 weeks ending 28 January 2018, increasing from 7.1% in the second quarter. Group turnover increased 12.5% to £72.1m in the period.

Industry News:

CBRE – major chains to target niche operators as established formats become ‘tired’: Agent CBRE has argued major chains will target niche operators as established formats become “tired”. In its pub market overview for March 2018, the company also said it believed joint-venture acquisitions of companies would gather pace this year. UK monthly all-property initial yield remained at 5.04%, London corporate prime pub yield stayed at 3.5%, London independent prime pub yields stuck at 5.0% and regional corporate prime pub yield stayed at 5.25%. Simon Johnson, corporate advisory, pubs and leisure at CBRE, said: “The most recent results season from the quoted pub and restaurant companies, and updates from some of the larger private operators had a number of near universal themes, including cost headwinds; falling consumer confidence; lower retail and leisure park footfalls; increased discounting activity; and the decline of food sales compared with drinks. With that background, the largest operators in the eating and drinking out sectors had to present a compelling investment case to hard-pressed shareholders and a wary debt market. With few exceptions, they chose to focus on the distinctiveness of their brand offering; potential for premiumisation; quality of their estates; the skills and enthusiasm of their people; and the strength and flexibility of their balance sheet. However, we are not convinced all will thrive in 2018 – particularly given the high-profile disappointments we have already seen among some of the former rising stars of the casual dining space and the continued caution from the value-food pub sub-sector. Therefore, it should not be too surprising to suggest established formats have become ‘tired’ and refreshing their model in terms of capex, menu changes, staff training and technology may no longer be enough. These operators may need to look seriously at bolt-ons of fledgling concepts that have a different appeal to a more cautious consumer and pump up the current prospect of flat earnings. However, the competition for operators with an edge (and particularly those with freeholds) will be intense and from a wider group of buyers than ever before. Existing players will need to prove their worth against a new breed of investors. Looking forward, we expect to see many more niche operators, often with unusual or clever ways of operating being approached by the major chains. Furthermore, the completion in 2017 of the Punch deal with Patron/May Capital and Heineken, the purchase by Aprirose of the Milton portfolio of 73 M&B managed pubs and the joint venture that included Proprium that bought Admiral Taverns firmly planted real estate investors in the operational pub realm. We firmly expect to see this continue in 2018 as property investors get even more comfortable with the risks and rewards of the operational side of freehold pubs and back out the real estate at prices that traditional owner-operators either cannot see or can’t finance.”

Starbucks launches $10m partnership to develop recyclable, compostable cup solution: Starbucks is committing $10m in partnership with Closed Loop Partners to develop a recyclable, compostable coffee cup. Through the NextGen Cup Challenge, the consortium will award accelerator grants to entrepreneurs working on ideas that could lead to the development of more sustainable cup solutions and, invite industry participation and partnership on the way to identifying a global solution. Each year, an estimated 600 billion paper and plastic cups are distributed globally. Throughout development, the solution will be open source so others can benefit and innovate on the path towards the development of recyclable and compostable cups around the world. “Our store partners proudly pour sustainably sourced coffee in our 28,000 locations around the world, but everyone wants to take our ability to serve it sustainably to the next level,” said Colleen Chapman, vice-president of Starbucks global social impact overseeing sustainability. “No one is satisfied with the incremental industry progress made to date, it’s just not moving fast enough. So, we are declaring a moon shot for sustainability to work together as an industry to bring a fully recyclable and compostable cup to the market, with a three-year ambition.” Meanwhile, Starbucks has started a trial of a new bio-liner, made partially from plant-based materials for its paper cup. The internal trial, expected to take six months, will test not only for environmental impact, but whether the cup’s liner can stand up to stringent safety requirements and quality standards when filled with a hot liquid. This trial marks the 13th internal test of its kind in the last year alone as part of continued efforts to deliver on its goal for a greener cup. Earlier this year, Starbucks began trialling a 5p charge on paper cups in the UK. 

Preoday launches survey to provide inside view on sector struggles: Ordering-technology provider Preoday has launched a survey as it aims to get to the bottom of restaurant chain struggles in the early part of 2018. With companies such as Prezzo and Jamie’s Italian facing hardship in recent months, and with government data saying at least four restaurants are closing every day, Preoday has decided to investigate further. The company, whose clients include Maroush and The Chesterford Group, is asking operators to participate in its survey and provide an inside view of the market’s struggles. The anonymous survey also asks respondents what challenges, if any, their own brand is facing. With the collective responses, Preoday hopes to build a clear profile of the sector, identifying pain points and potential solutions to commonly-felt problems. Preoday chief executive Nick Hucker said: “It seems many of the restaurants facing struggles offer delivery through companies such as Deliveroo but few of them own and market their own ordering platform. We are wondering whether such technology aids these brands in engaging direct with their customers. Does it do enough to differentiate them from their competitors and build a more loyal customer following? And indeed, is such differentiation what is needed in these challenging times? We aim to find out.” The results of Preoday’s research, alongside consumer insights, will form the basis of a report offering guidance for businesses on navigating the identified industry challenges. To take part in the survey, click here. Participants will be eligible for entry into a prize draw to win a £150 Amazon voucher and will be sent a copy of the report once complete. 

Sheffield’s first gay quarter to open this year: Sheffield’s first dedicated gay quarter, featuring a range of clubs, bars and a sauna, is set to open in the city centre this year. The project at Moorfoot will include the Queer Junction gay bar and combined gay club and sauna Fraternity, with both due to open in May. Three further units will open later this year that will include a pub with a pool hall, retail space and a restaurant. Project manager Matt Taylor told RMC Media: “Most cities in the UK have a thriving gay scene such as Manchester, Leeds, Liverpool and London to name a few. With the introduction of the gay quarter, Sheffield will be able to compete against other well-developed LGBT areas in the country. This means not only will the local LGBT community have somewhere to call their own but Sheffield as a city becomes more appealing to LGBT visitors and attracts LGBT talent to live there. This can only be good for our city.”

Survey finds 96% of diners think hospitality industry should do more to tackle single-use plastic: More than nine in ten (96%) of diners think the hospitality industry should do more to tackle the problem of single-use plastic, according to a survey by water provider Eau De Vie. A further three-quarters (75%) of people surveyed at the Hotelympia event said they were concerned about the possibility of plastic contaminating water and would rather be offered water from re-usable glass bottles. Eau de Vie marketing manager Adam Lenton said: “Consumers are increasingly concerned about the plastic issue. People we talked to were very clear they would like the hospitality industry to lead on this issue, and they would like to see establishments that are still using plastic bottled water change their methodology.” A large number of UK operators in the hospitality industry have moved to ban single-use plastic across their estates in the past six months.

Company News:

McDonald’s outlines plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions by more than one-third by 2030: McDonald’s has outlined plans to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by more than one-third (36%) by 2030 from 2015 levels. The company is adding LED lights and more efficient kitchen equipment such as grills and fryers in a bid to reduce emissions at its restaurants and offices. Changes to beef production, meanwhile, will lower greenhouse gases from the company’s supply chain by 31%. Suppliers are experimenting with new paddock-style grazing practices, in which herds are rotated across sections of pasture allowing the land to recover and reducing gases released by cattle. McDonald’s said the combined target had been approved by the Science-Based Targets initiative (SBTi), which it said was a first for a restaurant company. The SBTi is a collaboration between World Resources Institute, World Wildlife Fund, CDP (formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project) and the United Nations Global Compact, which helps companies determine how much they must cut emissions to play their part in addressing climate change. McDonald’s chief executive Steve Easterbrook said: “To create a better future for our planet we must all get involved. McDonald’s is doing its part by setting this ambitious goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to address the challenge of global climate change. To meet this goal, we will source our food responsibly, promote renewable energy and use it efficiently, reduce waste and increase recycling.” The environmental move follows the goal McDonald’s set earlier this year to recycle rubbish at all its 37,000 restaurants globally by 2025. As part of that effort, McDonald’s said it would make some food packaging more environmentally friendly. It has also pledged to help protect water supplies, promote animal welfare and preserve forests at cattle ranches that supply its beef. Meanwhile, McDonald’s said it had reached a settlement with the National Labor Relations Board, which accused the company of unfair labour practices as “joint employer” of its franchisees’ workers. McDonald’s did not reveal specifics about the settlement, only restating its position it “is not and never has been a joint employer with its franchisees”. McDonald’s said the agreement was subject to final approval by the Administrative Law Judge.

TRG Concessions takes on three new Edinburgh airport sites: The Restaurant Group (TRG) Concessions has taken on three new airside sites at Edinburgh airport. The company is now operating champagne bar Flutes and Tails, The Gathering and The Gathering Deli at the airport, which is the sixth-largest in the UK. Flutes and Tails offers champagne, wine, beer, spirits and cocktails alongside a wide-ranging food menu. The Gathering has a menu based on local ingredients and traditional dishes, often with a contemporary and creative twist. The Gathering Deli serves filled croissants, baguettes and hoagie rolls, alongside salads and a selection of 100% organic Fairtrade coffee. The openings further strengthen TRG’s presence in the airport with the new sites joining Barburrito, which launched in January, and BrewDog’s recently announced first airport bar in its portfolio as it looks to increase its presence at UK airports. TRG Concessions managing director Nick Ayerst said: “We are delighted to have acquired further sites at Edinburgh airport and look forward to trading them over the summer with a view to developing further award-winning concessions at the airport in 2019 and beyond. We welcome our new team members into the business and will invest in them and their businesses to help support future growth in our Edinburgh business.”

Deliveroo ordered to close Editions kitchen in Hove: Deliveroo has been told to close its Editions kitchen in Hove, East Sussex, because it breaches planning regulations. The company opened the hub at Saxon Works in Olive Road in April last year. Restaurants in the city such as Gourmet Burger Kitchen and Indian restaurant The Chilli Pickle use the unit to provide delivery-only meals. Deliveroo claimed it didn’t fall under the same hot-food planning category as a high-street takeaway, arguing it should be considered industrial use for which the unit already has planning permission. But Brighton and Hove City Council’s planning department has served it with an enforcement notice, requiring it to cease operation by July, reports Brighton and Hove News. Deliveroo does have the option of appealing the decision, however, which would effectively put the notice on hold until a government planning inspector made the final decision.

PubLove opens first refurbished site under Ei Group managed joint venture: PubLove, the London-based pub company that houses backpacker hostels and serves its own "Burger Craft" food in each venue, has opened The Crown, Battersea, following a £400,000 investment. The Crown is the first fully refurbished site to open since PubLove became the seventh Ei Managed Investments partner, when Ei Group secured a majority stake in the company last year. The refurbishment includes the introduction of a new craft rum and gin wall. The upstairs has also undergone a full upgrade to its existing hostel rooms. The pub also features a large outdoor seating area with heated terrace. The drinks offer features a range of craft beer and cask ale with a prominent focus on sourcing local beers from across London. The rum and gin wall features a range of craft rum and more than 20 local and imported gins. The food offer follows the same "Burger Craft Kitchen" model, with an extensive menu of bespoke burgers served alongside a selection of sides. PubLove founder and chief executive Ben Stackhouse said: “It's an opportunity for us to show Ei Managed Investments our vision for PubLove and for it to show us how it can be delivered. I've been very impressed with its overall approach to date and am certain the new look Crown will set the standard for our sites moving forward.” Nathan Wall, operations director for Ei Managed Investments, added: “It's an exciting offer – a quality pub with backpacker accommodation, in a popular area of London, which I have no doubt will succeed.” There are currently nine Ei Managed Investments partnerships in operation.

Ballymoney-based Ground Espresso Bars signs £1m coffee partnership with Irish service station operator Maxol: Ground Espresso Bars, Northern Ireland’s largest independently-owned scaled artisan coffee chain, has signed a £1m partnership with service station operator The Maxol Group. The new commercial partnership will see a Ground Espresso Bar open towards the end of March in Maxol’s flagship site on the A26 at Tannaghmore, Co Antrim, which opened less than a year ago following an investment of more than £200,000. The site will be Ballymoney-based Ground Espresso Bar’s 24th site and will feature high-speed Wi-Fi, charging points, large community tables, and indoor and outdoor children’s play areas, a first for the brand. Ground Espresso Bars director Karen Gardiner told the Belfast Newsletter: “We are really looking forward to opening this store with Maxol and expanding our store network. The partnership represents a significant investment by both companies and we look forward to seeing this develop further.” Maxol chief executive Brian Donaldson added: “As a family-owned and operated business with a passion for quality and innovation, we have much in common with our new partners and look forward to developing several projects with Ground over the next three years.” The Maxol Group operates more than 230 service stations across Northern Ireland and the Republic.

Maxwell’s Restaurant Group to launch Old Compton Brasserie for tenth site: Maxwell’s Restaurant Group is to launch all-day British brasserie concept Old Compton Brasserie this summer. The company is opening the site in Old Compton Street in Soho, utilising the former Muriel’s Kitchen site. The 170-cover venue will offer fresh and seasonal British favourites and a significant number of vegan options. The space, which has been stripped back to expose its original features, will have an industrial bohemian feel, with interesting pieces and sculptures sourced from local markets and dealers alongside artwork from local artists. The restaurant will feature a floating mezzanine, outdoor street seating and a large horseshoe bar, which will serve bespoke craft cocktails. The new venue will take the group’s portfolio to ten sites in total, which also include Maxwell’s Bar and Grill, Joe’s Southern Table and Bar, and Tropicana Beach Club.

PizzaExpress to relaunch app: PizzaExpress is to relaunch its app this month following extensive consumer research. The app, which has been updated to “reflect customer needs and wants”, will also let users pay for their meal at the table. At launch, the app will allow customers to find their nearest restaurant, book a table and stay up to date on bespoke customer rewards. In late spring, a click-and-collect function will be introduced to let customers order and collect their pizzas on the go. PizzaExpress is planning to roll out new features throughout the year, including augmented-reality features in the summer. Senior marketing manager Timothy Love said: “We are always looking at ways we can improve our customers’ experiences and our new app will do just that. The ‘pay at table’ function is perfect for those who are short on time. By listening to our customers, we’ve understood what’s important to them and are introducing a more personalised service, including bespoke rewards.”

Filmore & Union reveals more Midlands debut details as it expands John Lewis partnership with Nottingham site: Healthy eating cafe and restaurant company Filmore & Union has revealed more details of its debut site in the Midlands as it strengthens its partnership with John Lewis. Filmore & Union will open the venue on the first floor of John Lewis at the Intu Victoria Centre in Nottingham. It will have 60 covers and follow openings with John Lewis in York last year and Newcastle in February. Filmore & Union founder and owner Adele Ashley told The Business Desk: “After spending the past six years establishing ourselves in Yorkshire and the north east, we’re now looking for unsung foodie capitals across the UK we can bring our ‘feel-good’ brand to. Nottingham and the East Midlands in general was the next obvious move for us. The region’s independent food and drink scene is seriously on the up and we want to be part of it! Our aim is to build a nationwide chain that retains its independent feel, with each restaurant having a strong local supply chain embedded into its local community. Our chilled-out, relaxed atmosphere with premium, cosy interiors and high-quality food fits perfectly within the John Lewis brand and we can’t wait to see what local customers think.” Filmore & Union, which is backed by the British Growth Fund, currently has 17 restaurants.

Five Points Brewing Company launches £750,000 crowdfunding campaign for expansion: Hackney-based Five Points Brewing Company has launched a £750,000 fund-raise on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube to “expand its community”. The company, which is offering a 5.66% equity stake in return for the investment, will use the capital to open the first Five Points taproom at The Pembury Tavern in Hackney, which the company acquired last month. Funds will also be invested in new brewhouse equipment and fermentation tanks that would triple production in a bid to increase sales from two million to six million pints a year (34,000 hectolitres). A new research and development brew-kit at The Pembury would be used to develop new recipes and brewing processes. The company reached capacity in late 2016 and has been brewing some of its beer with a brewery in Belgium. The investment would enable Five Points to bring all production back to London. The fund-raise would also see the company invest in its team, expand UK distribution and develop its growing export business. Five Points Brewing Company, which has seen turnover increase from £173,000 in 2013 to £2.6m in 2017, was the first brewer in the UK to be an accredited Living Wage employer, sources electricity from 100% renewable sources and helped set up an apprenticeship scheme at Hackney Community College. Co-founder and managing director Ed Mason said: “We believe we have the potential not just to cement our position as one of London’s favourite brands but to become a truly national brand.”

Charles Wells to expand Pizza, Pots and Pints offering in Cambridge next month with second site, fifth in total: Bedford-based brewer and retailer Charles Wells is to open its second Pizza, Pots and Pints site in Cambridge next month – the fifth in total. The company launched the concept, based around artisan pizza and beer, at flagship site The Salisbury Arms in Cambridge in 2015. Now it is reopening the Carpenters Arms in Victoria Road as a Pizza, Pots and Pints on Thursday, 5 April. The pub closed in late January to undergo the rebrand. Operations director Benjamin Smith said: “We’ve extended the pub to allow us to welcome more guests and moved the bar to create a more welcoming atmosphere. Given the success of the Salisbury Arms, we can’t wait to breathe new life into the Carpenters Arms, which has had a tough few years.” The other Pizza, Pots and Pints sites are in Hitchin, Baldock and Peterborough. Earlier this month, Charles Wells commercial director Peter Wells told Propel the company was set to double the Pizza, Pots and Pints estate as well as add a site to its Apostrophe brand this year.

London-based operator acquires leasehold of Bayswater hotel off guide price of £750,000 for third site: London-based hotel operator Mohamed Usman has acquired the leasehold of Dean Court Hotel in Bayswater off a guide price of £750,000 for his third site. The 14-bedroom hotel in Inverness Terrace, which has been established for more than 50 years with the previous proprietor running it for 40 years, was marketed through agent Fleurets. It provides hostel accommodation, hotel rooms as well as a breakfast and kitchen area. Usman, who also owns Hartley Hotel in Forest Gate as well as Pasha Hotel in Camberwell Road, intends to carry out an ongoing refurbishment programme at Dean Court Hotel. Andy Frisby, of Fleurets, who brokered the deal, said: “Central London continues to prove a competitive market and it is therefore no surprise we received multiple offers for Dean Court Hotel. Subject to the relevant consents, this property has potential for the configuration of en-suite facilities so I am particularly excited to see the hotel evolve in the coming months.”

Peaberry Coffee House and Kitchen to start expansion with second Liverpool site: Peaberry Coffee House and Kitchen is to start expansion by opening a second site in Liverpool. The independent, vegan-friendly coffee shop concept has applied to open a venue at The Colonnades in Albert Dock in June or July. The family-run business offers all-day breakfast, fresh sandwiches and extravagant milkshakes. A spokeswoman told the Liverpool Echo: “Everything on our menu is freshly prepared in-house and cooked to order. We have a huge vegan and vegetarian offering and can usually tweak other items to make them plant-based or gluten-free. The new coffee house and kitchen will comprise two halves – one will be more laid-back and for takeaway, while the other side will offer a sit-down service and an evening restaurant menu.” The concept launched in St John’s Road last May and takes its name from the Brazilian “peaberry” coffee it serves.

Nottinghamshire-based operator to open second site for Italian takeaway meal and artisan ice-cream concept: Nottinghamshire-based operator Franco Concilio is to open a second site for his Italian takeaway meal and artisan ice-cream concept Pastability. Concilio launched Pastability in Newark three years ago. Now he will open the new venue on Monday, 26 March in Melton Road, West Bridgford, on the site of former Italian restaurant Pranzo. As well as fresh authentic Italian food, Pastability offers ten flavours of gelato along with a range of desserts, reports the West Bridgford Wire.

Glamorgan-based operator opens seafront restaurant and Pink Floyd bar: Vale of Glamorgan-based Gordon Hadfield, who operates Seashore Grill restaurant and Island View Caravan Park, has opened a seafront bar restaurant built using pebbles from the beach. The venue overlooking Swanbridge Bay consists of 56-cover restaurant On The Rocks and the Pink Floyd bar, named after Hadfield’s favourite band. The project, supported by £200,000 of funding from Barclays, was three years in development and has created 20 jobs. Hadfield told Wales Online: “I started reclamation of the beach and removed more than 10,000 tonnes of debris before obtaining planning permission to build the restaurant and bar. This venture was a three-year project but I am delighted with the result. Every day when I come to the restaurant and look out over the Bristol Channel, I think I am on holiday.”

JD Wetherspoon opens Norfolk pub: JD Wetherspoon has opened its latest pub, in Downham Market in Norfolk (population: 9,994). The company acquired the grade II-listed White Hart in Bridge Street from Oak Taverns in June 2016 and has reopened it as The Whalebone following a £2.5m investment, creating 65 jobs. The White Hart was known as The Whalebone between 1748 and 1791, a name that derives from the whaling trade that flourished in the area at that time. The new-look pub features a single bar, a garden with a courtyard accessed through a traditional cart access, and a turfed garden to the rear. Meanwhile, Wetherspoon is looking to open a site in the Surrey town of Dorking (population: 11,185). The company has submitted plans to turn five town centre shops in St Martin’s Walk into a 230-seat venue. Last week, Wetherspoon reported like-for-like sales increased 3.8% in the six weeks to 11 March 2018, with total sales up 2.6%. The company also reported sales for the 26 weeks to 28 January 2018 rose 3.6% to £830.4m – like-for-like sales were up 6.1%. 

Surrey-based craft beer bar and shop lodges plans for second site: Surrey-based craft beer bar and shop Hop Stop has lodged plans for its second site, in Reigate. The company opened the first outlet in Station Road East, Oxted, two years ago. Now it has applied to Reigate and Banstead Borough Council to convert the former La Lanterna restaurant in Bell Street, reports Get Surrey. In its application, Hop Stop stated: “We wish to expand our offering to Reigate by opening a second premises. This will be a combined specialist beer bar and retail shop focused on serving quality beer for drinking on-site or taking away. In addition, we would serve a selection of wine, spirits and non-alcoholic drinks. To complement the drinks we would offer a small and tailored grazing menu of prepared food. We would also like to hold special events such as bottle-share evenings, tutored tastings and beer-related talks.” Reigate has other independents specialising in beer. Last year, Four Hops opened a shop in West Street, while Pilgrim Brewery launched a taproom.

Blackburn-based operator to open second Caribbean restaurant: Blackburn-based operator David Wilson is to open his second Caribbean restaurant. Wilson launched Calypso in Preston New Road ten years ago before relocating to larger premises two years later in The Wharf in Eanam. Now he is preparing to open Sista Calypso in Croft Street, Darwen. Scheduled to open in April, it will take over the premises of Pamela’s cafe following owner Pamela Hacking’s decision to retire. Wilson will serve a selection of classic calypso dishes to eat in during the day and to take away on Friday and Saturday nights. He told the Lancashire Telegraph: “We will be offering a reduced menu, which will include all the favourites such as curried goat and, of course, jerk chicken.”

Whitbread gets go-ahead for second Premier Inn site in Hereford: Whitbread has been given the go-ahead for a second Premier Inn in Hereford. The company has been granted permission by Herefordshire Council for the 65-bedroom hotel and restaurant in Blackfriars Street, creating 25 jobs. The other Premier Inn in the city is in Holmer Road, reports the Hereford Times.

Tyrrells set for another sale: Herefordshire-based crisp-maker Tyrrells is set to be sold only months after it became part of US giant Hershey. Tyrrells was wrapped up in Hershey’s $1.6bn (£1.2bn) purchase of Amplify, which had itself paid £300m for Tyrrells in 2016. Although the Hershey deal was only agreed in December, The Business Desk reports the US firm is already considering a sale of the £60m-turnover crisp business. Tyrrells was founded in 2002 by William Chase at Tyrrells Court Farm, Herefordshire. It has grown through international acquisitions, including Australian business Yarra Valley Snack Foods and German producer Aroma Snacks. It has also diversified its product lines into other snacks, including popcorn, tortilla chips and vegetable crisps.

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