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Morning Briefing for pub, restaurant and food wervice operators

Thu 5th Nov 2015 - Propel Thursday News Briefing

Story of the Day:

Star Pubs and Bars to launch apprenticeship scheme: Star Pubs & Bars, which owns 1,100 UK pubs, is launching an apprenticeship scheme in response to demand from licensees. The scheme will help licensees home grow and retain their bar, kitchen and managerial talent and enable them to recruit apprentices via a free specialist service. Star Pubs & Bars has appointed Remit to provide the apprenticeship service to licensees, extending further the training support it provides to licensees for their staff. Chris Jowsey, trading director, Star Pubs & Bars, said: “Access to a good national provider for apprenticeships, with the facility to recruit staff, will be particularly useful for licensees whose pubs are receiving refurbishment as part of Stars’ ongoing investment in its estate as licensees typically need 25-30% more staff after a refurbishment. We expect that it will also be of particular interest to the growing number of multiple operators. Offering serious professional, portable qualifications is a vital part of improving the industry’s image and we’re delighted to be able to help our licensees access them and the government funding available. If pubs are to continue to increase food sales, the industry needs to start developing tomorrow’s talent. We all have a part to play in building the sectors’ credibility as a serious career option.” Remit was selected by Star Pubs & Bars for its expertise in providing apprenticeships both to SMEs and to the hospitality sector. As a result of this experience, Remit is well placed to understand the training and recruitment needs and challenges of leased pub businesses.

Industry News:

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

Dragons’ Den star – great moment for entrepreneurs to find funding but some valuations are crazy: Dragons’ Den star Touker Suleyman has told Business Insider there has never been a better time for entrepreneurs to get funding, but claimed part of the problem is that some company valuations are “crazy”. He said: “There’s never been a better time to get funding. There’s so many different ways for businesses to get money now from crowdfunding to private equity and venture capital. Part of the problem is that as you saw on Dragons’ Den, some company valuations are crazy. But there are opportunities for people who have great ideas and are realistic. The amount of young people between 11 and 21 years old who watch that programme is enormous. Schools need to teach them how to raise money, run a business, manage cashflow, and so on. I believe the UK will have more entrepreneurs in ten years’ time than ever before.”

HelloFresh partners Jamie Oliver to inspire healthy home cooking: International fresh food delivery service HelloFresh has partnered Jamie Oliver to make it even easier for people to cook delicious, nutritious food from scratch in their own homes. Under the new partnership, the duo aim to empower consumers to make better food choices and cook using fresh ingredients, no matter what their lifestyle. Founded in November 2011, HelloFresh has in recent years branched into an entirely new segment in the food industry: cook it yourself, without prior planning, shopping or food waste. “We want to give everyone – regardless of the time they have at their disposal or the cooking skills they possess – an opportunity to discover the pleasure of cooking healthy, tasty meals,” says Dominik Richter, co-founder and chief executive of the Berlin-based company. “In Jamie we have found the best, most trusted and most committed partner for this mission.” The partnership extends across six countries in which HelloFresh is active – the UK, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, USA and Austria. From January 2016, HelloFresh customers will be able to choose Jamie Oliver recipes to add to their boxes.

Euro Foods Group founder to launch new online takeaway and restaurant booking service, 3,000 outlets already signed up: Euro Foods Group founder Shelim Hussein will launch a new online takeaway and restaurant booking service this month. Hussein has created and to date 3,000 restaurants across the UK have already signed up for the service with the aim of topping 10,000 within a year. The venture, which has received a business finance package from the Welsh government, is creating nearly 300 jobs in Cwmbran. will provide its members with a web presence and e-commerce solution to enable their customers to order online, using web or mobile applications. It will also offer an outsourced procurement and consultancy service to assist restaurants and takeaways to improve their menu’s appeal, reduce costs and enable owners to better manage a profitable business. Hussein who received an MBE in 2003 for services to business in Wales, told Wales Online: “Kukd will provide a cost effective online service to member restaurants and takeaways and through better use of technology will provide enhanced services to members and provide a better end customer experience. It will complement our existing businesses and services and support the growth of smaller restaurants that do not have the software development skills to build interactive ecommerce websites to target larger markets.” Euro Foods Group now has a turnover of more than £110m.

Beany Green hits £300,000 mini-bond target in a day: Coffee shop chain Beany Green, the Australian-inspired concept founded by Prue Freeman and Tom Onions, has hit its mini-bond target in a day on Crowdcube. It has achieved its £300,000 target with a four-year bond paying 11% interest. A total of £314,200 has been raised already from 48 investors with 44 days left. The pitch states: “Our business has experienced solid top line growth over the last three years with net revenues (after VAT) increasing from £70,000 in FY13 to £1.7m in FY15 to £3.0m September 2015 run rate. We believe that our current five locations will continue to demonstrate strong growth over the next three years, delivering net revenues of £3.9m by FY18. We expect this growth to be capex light and to come through several planned new product offerings (weekday evenings at our location in Little Venice, an additional take away coffee outlet at Broadgate already agreed, increased lunchtime product offerings and minor reconfigurations at Regent’s Place). Our forecasts also assume that we add two additional locations in 2016 which together we expect to generate net revenues of circa £2.6m by FY18.”

KFC to open first all-you-can-eat buffet restaurant: KFC will open its first all-you-can-eat buffet restaurant next week. The company is opening the outlet in Osaka, Japan at the Expo City centre – the place where the very first Japanese KFC opened in 1970. For £13 – the average price of a bucket meal – diners will be able to go and grab as much chicken, chips and sides as they like for 90 minutes, reports Yahoo News UK. Children under the age of four can even eat for free. In September, KFC restaurants across Japan offered unlimited food and drink to honour what would have been the company’s founder Colonel Sanders’ 125th birthday.

Licensed trade gift and reward platform One From Me reaches 350 venues:
A number of sector businesses including Intertain, Eclectic, Glendola, Yummy Pub Co, Joules Brewery, Beds and Bars, Hall and Woodhouse, Sports Bar and Grill, Bath Pub Co and JSM in Liverpool have adopted sector reward and gift platform One From Me. The platform, which has reached 350 venues, is now planning to focus on corporate buyers who want to reward or incentivise their staff and drink brands who want to run promotions. The pubs and bars who have joined One From Me report it offers a simple mechanism to use a drink, delivered via email or text, as a way to attract more customers and gives the on-trade access to the £8bn gifting and rewards market.

Diageo to produce vegan-friendly Guinness: Diageo is to make Guinness vegan-friendly by removing isinglass from the brewing process, it has emerged. A Diageo spokeswoman said: “We are at the beginning of the project to install the new system. It is a complex project and will take many months to install and test before it goes live and is used in the production of Guinness. We hope to have the new system up and running by late 2016 with the liquid on the shelves for consumers to buy soon after. Isinglass has been used widely within the brewing industry as a means of filtration for decades. However, because of its use we could not label Guinness as suitable for vegetarians and have been looking for an alternative solution for some time. We are now pleased to have identified a new process through investment in a state-of-the-art filtration system at St James’s Gate which, once in place, will remove the use of isinglass in the brewing process.”

BII expresses concerns around Parallel Rent Assessment:
The British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) has stated elements of the first draft of the Pubs Code – such as the Parallel Rent Assessment – have come as a surprise and will need further attention. Tim Hulme, BII chief executive, said: “The BII welcomes the release of the first draft of the pubs code, but we admit to being taken aback by the unexpected condition around the Parallel Rent Assessment. We will be working hard during the next phase of consultation to see what’s behind the change and what it will entail. What is most important during this changeable, uncertain period is that we ensure our members are best placed and well informed to take advantage of a Market Rent Only option and to understand the costs and benefits of it. This option will give our tied members the freedom to buy drink wholesale on the open market and the safeguards that protect a tenant against landlord price increases are fundamentally important. What is essential is that all tenant groups collaborate effectively during this next round of consultation to ensure we establish the best possible outcome for our members.”

BrewDog’s ‘transgender beer’ comes under fire: A “transgender beer” being launched by BrewDog has come under fire from the LGBT community for using language that does not reflect the diversity of the movement. BrewDog has announced it is launching “the world’s first non-binary, transgender beer” tomorrow (Friday, 6 November) to coincide with the opening of its latest UK bar in Soho. No Label was designed to reflect the diversity of the area and champion inclusivity, Brewdog said. It plans to donate profits from the sales of No Label to LGBT events organisers Queerest of the Queer, which supports charities for trans youth communities. “This 4.6% ABV Kölsch has been brewed with hops that have changed sex from female to male flowers prior to harvest. We have used these to emphasise that, just like humans, beer can be whatever the hell it wants to be, and proud of it,” BrewDog said in a statement. A Stonewall spokesperson said: “While it’s encouraging to see BrewDog raising money for trans youth communities, and we like the ‘No Label’ concept, we’re concerned about the language. The trans community is diverse – many trans people do not transition, or identify with binary genders, and BrewDog’s language undermines that.”

Company News:

Douglas Jack issues ‘Buy’ note on Punch Taverns shares: Numis Securities leisure analyst Douglas Jack has issued a ‘Buy’ note on Punch Taverns shares ahead its strategy update on 12 November. He said: “We expect this to further reduce the risks it faces from the proposed Market Rent Only option, through the development of commercial lease and franchised pub estates. In our view, this should enhance the company’s level and quality of earnings over the long-term. The Market Rent Only option (MRO) legislation was flawed, in our view. It would have dis-incentivised investment and eroded leased pubs’ purchasing power and profitability. Thus, the government has started to water down this legislation, but Punch’s new strategy should still aim to minimise any exposure to MRO conversions. A move into franchising pubs would provide a platform for Ebitda growth, in our view. As Marston’s has shown, the move into franchised pubs can enhance the level and quality of earnings through targeted investment, motivating franchisees (who earn a percentage of turnover), extending buying power to a wider range of products, and adopting managed pub disciplines. Punch should build a commercial leased estate, in our view. Through improving earnings quality (commercial leases are typically valued at 12x EV/Ebitda versus Punch’s own market valuation of 8.1x 2016E), this increases the likelihood of a re- rating. We expect this estate could be attractive to Enterprise Inns, especially if it creates a REIT. We are downgrading our 2016E PBT forecast by £11.1m, largely to reflect the disposal of Matthew Clark, with the resultant £98m of net proceeds being held in cash, awaiting the opportunity to pay off £115m of 15% coupon (B4) notes in October 2016. Largely, as a result of buying back these notes, we forecast a 28% PBT increase in 2017E. In our view, Punch’s 2015E’s results should be in line in relation to Ebitda, due to core like-for-like net income guidance of 0.3%. Thereafter, we believe our forecast assumptions of 0.3-0.4% core like-for-like net income pa are cautious, and that Punch’s likely new strategy should have lower execution risks than Enterprise Inns’, including not requiring bondholder approval. We believe Punch is undervalued and that this strategic review should be a staging-post on the way to a re-rating.” 

Gourmet healthy snacks company EarlyBird reaches £300,000 target on Crowdcube: Gourmet healthy snacks company EarlyBird has reached its £300,000 target on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube – after three extensions. The company, founded by Oliver Pugh and Jamie Trinder in partnership with branding agency Saffron Brand Consulting, has seen 187 investors pledge £308,160 in return for 20% equity and it is now overfunding with two days left. The largest investment to date is £62,500. It is aiming to raise the money to continue developing the product and allow EarlyBird to break even and capture 10% of the market in three years. EarlyBird produces a tastebox offering five healthy snacks and two teas. The company launched its fund-raise on 4 September and was originally offering 15.79% equity. However, after talks with investors it decided to increase the equity to 20% in mid-October.

Simon French issues ‘Sell’ note on JD Wetherspoon after ‘implicit profit downgrade’:
Cenkos Securities leisure analyst Simon French has issued a ‘Sell’ note on JD Wetherspoon shares after a “disappointing trading update” reporting 2.4% like-for-like sales growth (total sales +6.1%) but at the expense of a 150bps decline in Ebit margin to 6.2%. He said: “Trading has been higher than the quarter one run-rate in the last six weeks, benefitting from the Rugby World Cup and weak comparables in October, we believe. The group has reiterated its openings guidance of 15 pubs (three in quarter one) but is now contemplating selling a small number of freehold pubs (in addition to the 20 leasehold pubs already on the market), at odds with its assertion it is in a sound financial position with the highest adjusted net debt/Ebitdar in the sector of 4.8x. The group conceded full-year results could be lower year-on-year due to increased labour costs (starting rates for hourly paid staff +13% in quarter one). Consensus forecasts for FY 2016E are £79.6m, up on the prior year’s £77.8m, so there is an implicit profit downgrade. We have been more cautious than consensus and forecast £75.9m profit before tax although our Ebit margin of 7.3% looks ambitious in the context of the quarter one performance. The shares have been strong into the update and trade on a CY 2016E adjusted EV/Ebitdar of 7.8x which appears high given the trading performance and guidance of lower profits and high net debt.”

BrewDog looks to recruit international bars chief to hit 100 sites by 2020:
BrewDog is looking to recruit an executive to lead its international bar expansions, with a target of 100 sites by 2020. It stated: “We are looking for a natural and inspiring leader for our international bars team. We are growing at a rate of knots, so we need you to put in place a solid strategy to allow this growth to continue on an international scale. Our mission is to make other people as passionate about great craft beer as we are, and our international bar division plays a key role in taking BrewDog global. You will be focused primarily on our partnership site strategy, building strong relationships with key partners trusted to execute our vision for exceptional craft beer bars in their local markets. Alongside managing these key relationships, you will also oversee our international managed sites. Between BrewDog managed and partner sites you will develop and implement a strategy to hit our target of 100 international sites by 2020! You will be an intuitive, versatile and culturally attuned communicator with a working knowledge of the cultural norms and nuances of a variety of global market places.”

Crawley operators convert half of pub into coffee shop: The operators of a pub in Crawley, West Sussex, have converted half of the site into a coffee shop. The Apple Tree in West Green now features Bramleys Coffee Shop. Cindy O’Rourke, whose husband Brian and their friend Paul Hasler are joint-landlords of The Apple Tree, believes the coffee shop will ensure the pub maintains a family-friendly atmosphere. She told the Crawley News: “When we first took the pub on we always wanted to open up a coffee or tea shop. The space has been recently refurbished along with the rest of the pub. We only have a small menu to start with but I hope to expand this in the future. We are selling a brand called Grumpy Mule, made from 100% arabica beans, which makes it nice and smooth. As we want to be a family pub we thought some people may prefer to go in the coffee shop side. All pubs are trying new things to stay in business.” The pub reopened late last year after being closed in March 2014.

Revolution Bars Group reports email marketing boost:
Revolution Bars Group has dramatically improved its email marketing using an improved Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system from digital marketing specialist Airship. The CRM solution builds on the strong relationship between Revolution and Airship, established over six years of working together, and recognises the need to continually improve customer marketing both as technology changes and as competition for customer spend heightens. Benefits of the enhanced system include: an increase in the number of customers registered for email notifications, up by 336% in four years; a 98% increase in party bookings over four years. Dan Brookman, commercial director of Airship, said: “Revolution sends over four million emails a month, and over time the amount of traffic being identified as spam by Internet Service Providers (ISPs) had increased. We’ve significantly reduced this by cleaning the data, sending fewer emails at a time, and improving the design and wording of emails. Revolution’s customers have signed up to receive emails, and so it’s important they don’t fall at the first hurdle by being incorrectly rejected by ISPs. We have continually ‘tweaked’ the process over the years, but this latest project has effectively rebuilt the system from the ground up over two years, and generated major improvements.” As a result of the project, the number of Revolution emails rejected by ISPs has fallen to just 0.25%, well below the industry average. In addition the average click rate – the number of emails opened by customers – has risen by 1.47%.

Comptoir Libanais to open first northern site in Manchester next week:
Lebanese restaurant Comptoir Libanais will launch its first site in the north of England in Manchester next Thursday (12 November). The company is opening the venue in The Avenue, Spinningfields. The new site has 280 covers, 100 specifically for the restaurant, a large area of outside seating and a private dining room. There will also be a mezze bar, serving cocktails along with a range of Lebanese wines and draft and bottled beers. The menu includes lamb kofta and shish taouk cooked on a charcoal grill and slow-cooked tagines. It features a number of dishes exclusive to Manchester, including two new mana’esh (Lebanese flatbread) with minced lamb and pomegranate or za’atar and olive. It will also be the first Comptoir Libanais restaurant to offer Lebanese spiced hot chocolate, infused with cinnamon and tahini and sprinkled with halva. Founder Tony Kitous, who individually designs each site, told the Manchester Evening News: “We’re extremely excited about opening in Manchester and showcasing the food, culture and hospitality of Lebanon. I seriously can’t wait.” Comptoir Libanais currently has 11 sites across London and the south east.

Former Cinnamon Club chef to launch first solo venture today: Former Cinnamon Club chef Abdul Yaseen is launching his first solo venture, Darbaar, in Snowden Street, in the City of London today (Thursday, 5 November). Located within five minutes from both Shoreditch and Liverpool Street stations and set over 5,500 square feet, Darbaar houses a 70-cover destination cocktail bar area, 120-cover restaurant including an interactive grill seating area, 20-cover private dining room and a bespoke chef’s table for up to ten people. Darbaar’s cuisine takes its inspiration from the many diverse regions of India and will cook with traditional clay ovens and have a charcoal robata grill on display that will lend a sense of theatre to the restaurant. The menu will feature healthy grills, street tapas, spit roasts, biryani and Royal Indian gravies with artisan bread. Yaseen said: “My vision of Darbaar is to recreate memories where my diners will love to host their tables and encourage sharing the food which once was the charm of the royal courts.”

Aberdeen entrepreneur to relaunch fine-dining restaurant as casual barbecue eatery: Aberdeen entrepreneur Chris Tonner has unveiled plans to relaunch one of his fine-dining restaurants as a casual barbecue eatery. Tonner will close The Courtyard after Hogmanay, which will then reopen as barbecue cuisine and “dirty cooking” concept Cue by February. His group Beetroot Restaurants, which includes the Adelphi Kitchen and outside catering company Eat Beetroot, will partner with emerging Aberdeen hot sauce producers Angus & Oink for the new venture. Tonner said the partnership was forged to meet the increasingly popular “dirty cooking religion” trend across the UK. He told the Press and Journal: “The recent popular barbecue trend has taken the UK by storm, so we have decided to be one of the first establishments to bring this new dining experience to the city, diversifying the market with our unique ideology. We want the new business to be one of the leading eating destinations in the city so we have decided to pull away from the fine-dining aspect and offer customers an authentic barbecue experience.”

1,300-capacity Plymouth nightclub set to reopen:
A new nightclub is to open in Plymouth’s Union Street with one of the former faces of the Dance Academy and the man who used to run a recently closed city venue at the helm. Dan James, former owner of the White Rabbit in Bretonside, is taking over C103 in Union Street working with promoter Tom Costelloe – formerly of the Dance Academy. James was forced to close down the White Rabbit after ten years when plans for the new Bretonside development were given the go ahead earlier this year. Now he plans to revive C103 and have it open by December with a new name, new team and entice big name acts to the city. James will run the venue alongside Simon Moore, who has worked at C103, Factory and the Live Lounge, as well as well-known promoter for the former Dance Academy, Costelloe. Moore owns the lease on the huge building. The venue, which hasn’t been open for two years, can hold 1,300 people when all the rooms are open. The trio hopes to have at least one room open, with a capacity of 750, by the middle of December.

Leeds-based Hedonist Drinks to launch first pop-up whiskey bar after teaming up with Diageo: Leeds-based Hedonist Drinks will launch its first pop-up whiskey bar this month after teaming up with Diageo. The company, led by bar entrepreneurs Dan Crowther, Bruce Lerman and Tom Finnon, is opening The Liquor Store & Whiskey Parlour at the former Wok On site at Lower Briggate in the city. Following the success of their pop-up bar The Rum Shack, the trio has teamed up with Diageo for the venture that will feature more than 60 fine whiskies. The bar will open between 8am and 11pm and serve small plates and brunches, all inspired by its Scottish anchor until the end of March. The site will offer whiskey-tasting sessions with ambassadors from the brands, as well as one-off liquor and food pairing evenings. Crowther, who has managed three of the city’s bars; Jakes Bar, Smokestack and Sandinista as well as working at MeatLiquor and Angels Share, told The Business Desk: “We’re working on plans to have some internationally renowned bars as pop-ups – bringing awesome concepts and talent to Leeds, which hopefully will help make our city even better.” Lerman previously managed Bar Epernay while Finnon was general manager of Smokestack for four years.

Stonegate Pub Company reopening Beverley pub tomorrow after £200,000 refurbishment now offering breakfast:
Stonegate Pub Company will reopen The Grapes in Beverley, East Yorkshire, tomorrow (Friday, 6 November) following a £200,000 refurbishment that sees the pub now offer breakfast. The 18th century pub in Market Square has been refurbished throughout and will have greater range of cask ale, a new and improved choice of food, better sports viewing facilities and a weekly line up of entertainment. It will also open at 8am each day offering a breakfast menu featuring the full English, pancakes with maple syrup or fresh fruit and yoghurt as well as freshly brewed coffee and hot drinks. The pub has added a range of snacks and light bites, fresh salads, grilled dishes and burgers to its menu alongside pub favourites such as Cumberland sausage and seasoned mash. The cask beer range will offer regular rotating beers from nationally recognised breweries as well as local favourites. Manager Mark Clayton said: “The Grapes is truly a great local pub and much loved by the people of Beverley. We are delighted to be able to give it a sparkle, so that it may continue to be the heart of the community for many years to come. I am particularly excited that we will be opening earlier, adding another amenity to Beverley, that of a breakfast destination.”

Food court closes at Glasgow shopping centre operated by franchisee in administration:
The food court at the Buchanan Galleries shopping centre in Glasgow, which is operated by franchisee Food and Beverage Group (FABG) that went into administration earlier this year, has closed. The area, which is on the top floor of the complex and houses fast food outlets and coffee shops including Burger King and Caffe Italiano, has been roped off. A sign at the top of the escalator states: “Our food court is now closed”. It suggests alternative eateries in the centre but offers no explanation as to why it shut. A spokeswoman for Buchanan Galleries, which is owned by Land Securities, told the Evening Times: “The operator has unfortunately gone into administration, meaning they can no longer run the food outlets on the second floor.” An administrators’ report said FABG had been profitable for a number of years but ran into cash problems in 2014. Overall turnover fell by about 17% in 2014 and the company ran up arrears on its rent, VAT and staff costs. Unsecured creditors are owed £927,518.

Harbour Hotels acquires two former banks in centre of Bristol for new hotel:
Harbour Hotels will build a 42-bedroom luxury hotel and spa in the centre of Bristol on the site of two former banks. The company has acquired the former Lloyds Bank and neighbouring Midland Bank in Corn Street that will be knocked together and converted into the new hotel, reports the Western Daily Press. “These acquisitions further illustrate our ambitious growth plans; becoming one of the UK’s most exciting hotel brands,” said Harbour Hotels boss Mike Warren, who has also bought buildings in Brighton and Salcombe to create hotels. “Expanding into cities such as Bristol and Brighton brings a new dimension to the group, with properties now featured in coastal, country and city locations. Offering an abundance of character and detail, these architecturally exceptional period buildings will lead the way in city luxury.” The Lloyds Bank site closed last year and was one of the last of the grand financial institutions in Corn Street – which was at its peak the heart of the city’s trade and commerce.

Costa becomes first UK brand to advertise with BuzzFeed branded content:
Costa is the first UK brand to advertise with BuzzFeed branded content, with the launch of its “Little things that make people in Britain happy” film. Tapping in to its British heritage, the video features a series of customers discussing the things that make Brits smile most, which includes everything from fancy dress and football to loyalty cards and cheese and ham toasties. The partnership was brokered and managed by Newcast, part of ZenithOptimedia, and sees Costa come first to Europe with BuzzFeed Motion Pictures branded content, which launched 18 months ago in the US. Caroline Harris, Costa’s UK & Ireland marketing director said: “Collaborating with Buzzfeed on a UK and European first has allowed us to engage our Facebook fans in a truly new, innovative and engaging way. As a British brand we hope the film will make the people of Britain smile, like and share across both Buzzfeed and our social channels.”

Holohans owners to open second site:
Belfast barge restaurant Holohans is set to open a second outlet in the city. The owners of Holohans at the Barge, situated at Belfast’s Waterfront Hall, are opening the new restaurant in the Queen’s Quarter following a £100,000 investment. The new venture, to be known as Holohans Pantry, is set to create 12 jobs in year one for the city. The first Holohans opened in November 2013 as a family-run business that prides itself on using local produce and updating classic Irish cuisines with a modern twist. The family has decided to open a second restaurant because of growing demand from customers and the success of the Barge. Calvin Holohan, restaurant manager at Holohans, told Belfast Live: “Our first restaurant has been so successful that we’re having to turn customers away. It has created a real buzz and there is the demand for us to open a second outlet. The Queen’s Quarter area is an ideal location due to its proximity to Queens University and high footfall. It’s a well-known spot with a lot of good restaurants but we feel we offer something different that sets us apart.”

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