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Mon 5th Nov 2018 - Update: Restaurant closure, Gordon Ramsay, Beannchor Group
Record number of restaurant closures: More restaurant businesses collapsed in the first nine months of this year than in the whole of 2017, according to new figures. The Times stated: “Middle-market chains are bearing the brunt of the spate of closures as 1,123 restaurant companies have become insolvent so far this year. An analysis of figures from the Insolvency Service shows that the number of closures is up by a third across England, Wales and Scotland. Throughout the whole of last year, 1,075 restaurants failed, 833 of which went under in the first nine months.” Paul Pittman, partner at the accountants Price Bailey, which carried out the analysis, told The Times that social media was accelerating changes in consumer tastes. “Chain restaurants are particularly vulnerable to changing consumer fads,” he said. “What was once flavour of the month can quickly go out of fashion.”

Gordon Ramsay’s restaurants return to profit: Gordon Ramsay’s restaurant business has reported a pre-tax profit of £200,000 in the year to August 2018 on revenue up 3.8 per cent to £53.4m – it made £3.8m loss in the previous 12 months. Underlying earnings rose 15 per cent to £4.6m. The company has 38 restaurants, 16 of them in London plus 27 international venues. Meanwhile, Ramsay is to open Hell’s Kitchen at Caesars Palace Bluewaters Dubai. Already in existence at the original Caesars Palace hotel in Las Vegas, the Hell’s Kitchen restaurant is designed to look and feel like you’re on the set of the eponymous TV show. Billed as an “experiential and immersive destination restaurant”, it promises “show-stopping theatre and world-class cooking”. It’s the second restaurant for Ramsay in the city, joining Bread Street Kitchen in Dubai’s Atlantis The Palm.

Beannchor Group reveals £4m Lisburn hotel plans: Northern Ireland hospitality company Beannchor Group has revealed plans to build a £4m hotel in the centre of Lisburn. The company, which owns pubs, hotels and restaurants across the country including eight Little Wing Pizzeria sites, has earmarked a former Argos store at Lisburn Square for the new venue. It would take up about 30,000 square feet of the existing scheme and include 52 bedrooms and a ground-floor bar and restaurant, creating 75 jobs. Beannchor Group managing director Bill Wolsey told Insider Media: “We already have a presence in Lisburn Square through our Little Wing Pizzeria and have been working alongside the square’s owners for the past six months to create the vision for a hotel the people of Lisburn can be proud of.” The hotel is scheduled to open next summer. Nicky McCollum, development director at Lisburn Square, added: “The Merchant and Bullitt Hotels created in Belfast by the Beannchor team have been instant successes and are at the cutting edge of the hospitality industry in Northern Ireland. Further to our plans for the new hotel, it is our intention to attract other quality food and beverage operators to the square in the short term and continue to create a family friendly environment within the piazza as well as stimulate the night-time economy.” CBRE and GVA NI are acting on behalf of Lisburn Square as joint letting agents.

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