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Fri 30th Aug 2019 - Exclusive: Coffeesmiths Collective acquires Taylor St Baristas UK and US, eyes expansion
Exclusive – Coffeesmiths Collective acquires Taylor St Baristas UK and US, eyes expansion: Coffeesmiths Collective, the Toby Smith-led business that runs various coffee chains including the Department of Coffee and Social Affairs (DoCaSA) and Filmore & Union, has acquired the Taylor St Baristas operations in the UK and the US, Propel has learned. In the UK this includes Taylor St Baristas roastery business and customer base along with the Taylor St brand. The Taylor St Baristas site in New York will also remain under the Coffeesmiths Collective umbrella. As part of the deal, Taylor St Baristas will continue to operate in the Man Group Headquarters in London under Coffeesmiths Collective’s management. Propel understands the company has identified a new site for a Taylor St store, which will open in the City of London before the end of the year, and plans for further expansion of the brand both in the UK and internationally. Last month, Black Sheep Coffee acquired eight London-based sites operated under the Taylor St brand. It has now commenced a rebranding of the sites to its own eponymous brand. Smith told Propel: “We are delighted to have acquired the Taylor St brand and have big plans for it in both the UK and beyond. In accordance with our wishes Black Sheep Coffee, which recently acquired the legacy store estate, have begun to de-brand the sites from Taylor St. This will be completed soon.” Last month, Taylor St Baristas appointed administrators to support the restructure – and potential sale – of its coffee business. The business, founded in 2006 by siblings Andrew, Laura and Nick Tolley, was one of London’s first speciality coffee houses. Between 2012 and 2015, Taylor St Baristas partnered with Tesco to develop and operate the Harris + Hoole chain of speciality coffee shops, launching more than 50 sites in three years before selling its share to the supermarket company. More recently the business commenced a shift in strategy away from owning and operating cafes, focusing instead on the development of its partnership and wholesale businesses, working with large multinational clients and local specialist operators to grow their speciality coffee programmes. As part of this strategy, the business undertook the sale of eight of its cafes – along with a licence to operate the cafes under the Taylor St brand – to Black Sheep Coffee. Coffeesmiths Collective rolls out and acquires speciality coffee shops and companies preserving, wherever appropriate, their strong individual identities. Its flagship brand is DoCaSA. It also owns Bea’s of Bloomsbury, Small Batch Coffee, Baker & Spice, Nordic Bakery and Urban Tea Rooms. Propel revealed last month Coffeesmiths Collective had added yet another brand to its portfolio by acquiring The CoffeeWorks Project business out of administration.

More than 200 booked for ground-breaking Operations Directors’ Conference: More than 200 people have now booked to attend the Operations Directors’ Conference in which some of the sector’s leading operators will share expertise, ideas and insights into all areas of operations. The full-day event takes place on Wednesday, 25 September at One Moorgate Place in London. The event, in partnership with Elliotts chief executive Ann Elliott, will see company leaders from across the industry talk about all parts of the operating model, from building and leading an effective operations team to maximising profitability. Speakers will include Bill’s managing director Sarah Hills, who will discuss “getting the best out of absolutely everyone”, while Casper & Cole managing director Sam Lee will explain “why the detail matters”. Oakman Inns and Restaurants chief operating officer Dermot King will reveal how to lead an effective operations team in a dynamic world, while Vagabond managing director Stephen Finch will talk about how great operators maximise profitability. Tortilla managing director Richard Morris will look at what makes a great operator, while ETM Group owner Ed Martin will explain the importance of keeping operations at the heart of a business. Pret A Manger’s new chief executive Pano Christou will talk about operating in a fast-paced world, while former Fuller’s managing director Jonathon Swaine will look at the need to keep operations simple, focused and effective. There will also be two panel sessions. Miller & Carter retail operations director Sue Walsh, Pizza Pilgrims operations manager Charlie Warren, Caffe Nero managing director Glyn House, and Frankie & Benny’s managing director Ollie Humphries will discuss building the right operations team while protecting the brand and delivering consistency for guests. Meanwhile Ian Edward, co-founder of Hippo Inns; Peter Kemp-Welch, partner at Piper; and Paul Campbell, founder of Hill Capital Partners, will discuss investing in great operators. Tickets are £295 plus VAT for Propel Premium subscribers and £345 plus VAT for all others. To book, email or call 01444 817691.

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