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Morning Briefing for pub, restaurant and food wervice operators

Mon 11th Oct 2021 - Turtle Bay back on the expansion trail, like-for-like sales up 76.6% on 2019 levels
Turtle Bay back on the expansion trail, like-for-like sales up 76.6% on 2019 levels: Caribbean restaurant brand Turtle Bay has returned to the expansion trail, as the 42-strong business reported “exceptional trading” during the first 19 weeks since reopening restaurants indoors. The Piper-backed business said from 17 May 2021 its sales were up 76.6% compared with the same period in 2019. Turtle Bay, which was founded by Ajith Jayawickrema in 2011, said it had prepared for reopening by recruiting more staff, investing in its people and planning new site openings. It finished the year with more team members than at the start. It has recently opened a new restaurant in Coventry, revived its site in Blackburn and will shortly open a new site in Durham with a further opening in Croydon later this year. Its growth plans come as Turtle Bay filed accounts at Companies House for the year ended 28 March 2021, with sales for the period totalling £32.5m. The group made Ebitda of £1.6m during the year, but posted a loss before tax of £3.3m. Once adjusted for non-recurring items, loss before tax was £2.5m. Chief executive Nick Crossley, who joined the business from Mitchells & Butlers earlier this year, said: “We are delighted by this exceptional trading period, with two-year like-for-like sales up 76.6% since reopening our restaurants indoors in May. The confidence gained during the short period of time we were permitted to trade during the past financial year allowed us to accelerate our reopening plans and be in the best possible shape to live up to the high expectations of our guests. We’ve benefited from the pent-up demand but have enjoyed underlying sustained growth over an extended period. During the last financial year, more than ever, our focus was on the well-being of our people. We used the time during lockdown to nurture the talent within our business and we’re extremely proud that we finished the year with more team members than we started. I’d like to thank the Turtle Bay team for their tremendous work during such a challenging period – we are so grateful to them and to all our guests for their support. We are also indebted to our shareholders, banks, landlords, suppliers and the government for their assistance. Our sector continues to face challenges, noticeably around labour shortages and uncertainty of supply of goods, from which we are not immune. But we tackle these face on by working with our business partners. We’re delighted to be growing again, with restaurants opening in Coventry, Durham, Blackburn and Croydon before Christmas. We remain active in exploring new site opportunities. Turtle Bay remains well-funded and, combined with our strong shareholder backing, we have a firm foundation to continue expanding our portfolio of sites into 2022 and beyond.”
Turtle Bay features in Propel’s Turnover & Profits Blue Book, which is updated monthly for Premium subscribers. Turtle Bay has turned over an average of £59.0m in the past five years. The Blue Book, which is produced in association with Mapal Group, provides a five-year overview of turnover and profit, ranks 410 companies according to turnover, pre-tax profit and profit conversion. It also provides details of directors’ earnings and highest paid directors. Companies can now have an unlimited number of people receive access to Propel Premium for a year for £895 plus VAT – whether they are an operator or a supplier. The regular single subscription rate of £395 plus VAT for operators and £495 plus VAT for suppliers remains the same. Email to sign up.

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