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Morning Briefing for pub, restaurant and food wervice operators

Mon 7th Feb 2022 - Update: German Doner Kebab, JKS Restaurants and consumer confidence
German Doner Kebab set to open 78 new restaurants this year, like-for-like sales up 27%: German Doner Kebab, owned by Hero Brands, plans to open 78 new sites this year, creating almost 3,000 jobs. The company revealed plans to grow to 170 restaurants across the UK this year. The brand opened 39 restaurants last year despite pandemic disruption. Bosses said the new growth plan will take the brand to Leeds, Brighton, Portsmouth, Great Yarmouth, Aberdeen, Stoke and include additional sites in London and Glasgow. In 2021, the group reported a 75% jump in total sales as it was buoyed by trade from new sites. German Doner Kebab also reported a 27% in like-for-like sales in 2021, compared with the previous year. Chief executive Imran Sayeed said: “We have been extremely agile during the pandemic, listening to the needs of our customers and responding to the huge demand for our game-changing kebabs. This has enabled us to build greater levels of brand awareness and customer loyalty as we bring the German Doner Kebab experience to more cities and towns throughout the UK.” The company also highlighted a development pipeline of 350 sites it hopes to open over the next seven years. It also operates more than 80 restaurants elsewhere across the world, with the brand also planning a further 11 North American openings this year as well as its first site in Saudi Arabia. Sayeed added: “We have developed strong franchise relationships in strategic global locations and we are now working closely with our partners to take forward development plans and expand our reach into new regions.”

Sixth edition of The New Openings Database sent to Premium subscribers, 26,100-word report included: The sixth edition of The New Openings Database, which is produced in association with StarStock, has been sent to Propel Premium subscribers. It shows the details of 495 newly announced site openings and upcoming launches. The database, which is published on a monthly basis, shows the details of which company has opened a site or its plans to open one in the future. It has details on what type of site it is and its location. There is also a website link to the businesses so you can find out more about them. The sixth edition of the database features new and expanding leisure and hotel concepts, unique cuisine and regional brands in growth. Premium subscribers also received a 26,100-word report on the new additions to the database. Premium subscribers also receive access to two other databases. The latest Propel Multi-Site Database, which is produced in association with Virgate, contained 87 new companies, bringing the total number of businesses listed up to 2,293. The 918 sites run by those 87 new additions means the entire database of sites has reached 63,489 sites. Premium subscribers also received a 6,500-word report on the new businesses added. The go-to database provides company names, the people in charge, how many sites each firm operates, its trading name and its registered name at Companies House if different. There is also a synopsis of what the business does and significant news associated with it. Premium subscribers also receive the Turnover & Profits Blue Book, which is produced in association with Mapal Group. The Blue Book, which is also updated every month, provides an insight into UK operator turnover and profitability over five years, profit conversion and directors’ earnings. 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 single subscription rate is £445 plus VAT for operators and £545 plus VAT for suppliers. Email jo.charity@propelinfo.com to upgrade your subscription. Subscribers also receive access to Propel’s library of lockdown videos and Friday Wrap interviews and now also have access to a curated video library of the sector’s finest leaders and entrepreneurs, offering their insights on running outstanding businesses in the sector. Premium subscribers also receive their morning newsletter 11 hours early, at 7pm the evening before our 6am send-out; regular video content and regular exclusive columns from Propel group editor Mark Wingett.

JKS Restaurants to open second Berenjak site: JKS Restaurants, led by Karam, Jyotin and Sunaina Sethi, is to open a second site under its Iranian concept Berenjak, in London’s Borough Market. The concept, which launched in Soho in October 2018, will open on the former Flor site in Bedale Street. Flor, which was launched by James Lowe and John Ogier in partnership with JKS, permanently closed its Borough Market site earlier this month. The first Berenjak opened in Romilly Street and reinterprets hole-in-the-wall kebab houses that line the streets of Tehran. Berenjak, which takes its name from brightly coloured, toasted rice eaten at funfairs, is the brainchild of chef Kian Samyani, who has worked at the JKS-backed Gymkhana and Brigadiers restaurants.

Fears over cost-of-living knocks consumer confidence: Mounting fears about the cost-of-living crisis have knocked consumer confidence for a second consecutive quarter, a survey has found. The Times reports Deloitte’s consumer confidence tracker fell by one percentage point to minus 11% in the final three months of last year. It comes after the gauge also fell by one percentage point in the third quarter of 2021 and adds to evidence that households are increasingly worried about their finances. The government is under increasing pressure to do more to help Britons who face a squeeze from spiralling energy costs, soaring inflation and rising taxes. Surging gas prices on world markets in recent months prompted Ofgem, the energy regulator, to lift its price cap last week in a move that will result in a 54% rise in energy bills to £1,971 a year for 22 million households from April. National insurance is to rise in the same month in a further blow to household finances. Surging energy prices are boosting inflation, which the Bank of England forecasts will hit 7.25% in April. In response ratesetters at the bank last week lifted the base interest rate to 0.5% from 0.25%. The move is aimed at tackling price rises and will push up the cost of floating-rate mortgages and other borrowing, tightening the squeeze on consumers. According to the Deloitte tracker, 41% of consumers experienced a rise in personal expenditure in the last quarter of 2021, up from 36% in the previous three months. About three quarters blamed rising prices. Respondents were also downbeat on the wider outlook, sentiment about the state of the economy declining by eight percentage points quarter on quarter to a net balance of minus 53%. This was the lowest level since the first three months of last year, when the economy was gripped by lockdown measures to counter the spread of covid-19. The findings are based on an online survey of 3,177 consumers by YouGov between 31 December and 5 January. Ian Stewart, Deloitte’s chief economist, said: “Sharply higher inflation and a squeeze on consumer spending power has hit consumer confidence. With inflation set to rise further, a tough few months are in prospect. However, high savings, strong consumer balance sheets and rising employment should help soften the blow to spending caused by higher inflation.”

Last orders for pub claiming to be the oldest in England: A pub that claims to be the oldest in England is to close because of financial pressure caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Ye Olde Fighting Cocks in St Albans is closing its doors “with great sadness” after entering administration. The Hertfordshire venue was built in the 11th century, although the pub’s own history says it dates as far as 793. Landlord Christo Tofalli said in a Facebook post: “It is with great sadness that I have to announce that, after a sustained period of extremely challenging trading conditions, Ye Olde Fighting Cocks has gone into administration. Along with my team, I have tried everything to keep the pub going. However, the past two years have been unprecedented for the hospitality industry, and have defeated all of us who have been trying our hardest to ensure this multi-award-winning pub could continue trading into the future. I am currently working with the owner, Mitchells & Butlers, to lessen the impact of the closure of Ye Olde Fighting Cocks as we go into administration.”

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