9 December 2019

Both Pubs and Restaurants Feel Pressure on Eating-Out Spend

Total Like For Like Sales Growth
  • Drink sales help managed pubs grow like-for-likes 0.7%
  • While restaurant chains see like-for-like sales slip 0.1%

Britain’s managed pub and restaurant groups saw collective like-for-sales edge up 0.5% in November compared with the same month last year, latest figures from the Coffer Peach Business Tracker reveal.

“But the figures show that much of that growth was driven by drinks sales, with eating out in pubs as well as restaurants under pressure,” said Karl Chessell, director of CGA, the business insight consultancy that produces the Coffer Peach Tracker, in partnership with Coffer Group and RSM.

Restaurant groups saw like-for-like sales slip 0.1%, and while managed pubs recorded overall like-for-like growth of 0.7%, that included an increase in drinks sales of 1.1%. Like-for-like food sales in pubs were down 0.2% in November.

“Also, school half-term holidays at the start of the month produced a healthy first week of trading, and without that we would have been looking at negative sales across the board for the month,” added Chessell.

Paul Newman, Head of Leisure and Hospitality at RSM said, “It was perhaps unsurprising that a wet and windy November saw diners sheltering at home rather than braving the elements. The restaurant sector saw volume sales down 2.1% over the month and operators will be relieved that the fall in number of covers was largely offset by higher spend per head by those who did dine out. With drinks led businesses seeing like-for-like sales growth, the signs are positive that the festive trading season will deliver some welcome news for the sector.”

“The data suggests a lacklustre market in the run-up to the General Election and Christmas,” said Trevor Watson, executive director, Valuations at Davis Coffer Lyons. “In London, operators are hoping and expecting there to be no significant impact on leisure spend as a result of the latest terror incident in the capital. Operators everywhere are hoping that the general election will revive consumer confidence generally in the final run-up to Christmas the New Year festivities. This could lead to much needed favourable December figures,” he continued.

Total sales across the 58 companies in the Tracker, which include the effect of net new openings since this time last year, were ahead 3.0% compared to last November.

Underlying like-for-like growth for the Tracker cohort, which represents both large and small operators, was running at 1.6% for the 12 months to the end of November, which is just below the 1.7% registered at the end of October.

The Coffer Peach Tracker industry sales monitor for the UK pub, bar and restaurant sector collects and analyses performance data from 58 operating groups, with a combined turnover of over £11bn, and is the established industry benchmark.

Participating companies receive a fuller detailed breakdown of monthly trading. To join the cohort, contact Andrew Dean, Andrew.Dean@cga.co.uk

About Coffer Peach Business Tracker
CGA collects sales figures directly from 58 leading companies. Participants include: Alchemist, All Star Lanes, Amber Taverns, Azzurri Group (Zizzi, ASK), Banana Tree Restaurants, Bermondsey Pub Company (part of Ei Group), Bills, BrewDog, Buzzworks, Byron, Carluccio’s, Casual Dining Group (Café Rouge, Bella Italia, Las Iguanas), Coaching Inn Group, Deltic, Dominion Hospitality, Drake & Morgan, Fazenda, Fuller Smith & Turner, Gaucho Grill, Giraffe Restaurants, Greene King (Chef & Brewer, Farmhouse Inns, Hungry Horse ), Gusto, Hall & Woodhouse, Honest Burgers, Laine Pub Co, Le Bistrot Pierre, Le Pain Quotidien, Liberation, Loungers, Marston’s, McMullen, Mitchells & Butlers (Harvester, Toby Carvery, Miller & Carter, All Bar One), Mowgli, New World Trading Co, Oakman Inns & Restaurants, Peach Pubs, Pizza Express, Pizza Hut Restaurants, Prezzo, Punch Pub Co, The Restaurant Group (Frankie & Bennys, Chiquitos, Brunning & Price), Revolution Bars, Rileys, Rosa’s Thai Café, Snug Bar, St Austell, Star Pubs & Bars, Stonegate Pub Co (Slug & Lettuce, Yates’, Walkabout), TGI Fridays, True North Brew Co, Upham Pub Company, Urban Pubs & Bars, Various Eateries (Strada, Coppa Club), Wadworth, Wagamama, Whitbread (Beefeater, Brewers Fayre, Table Table), YO! Sushi and Youngs.