Whitbread plans to keep Beefeater name

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Whitbread has hit back at suggestions that the Beefeater name will be dropped from the 209-strong pub restaurant chain.The group is currently...

Whitbread has hit back at suggestions that the Beefeater name will be dropped from the 209-strong pub restaurant chain.

The group is currently reviewing the underperforming chain and will revamp the brand in the spring. "The brief we are working to is that it will have a fresh new look that will be unveiled in a selected number of outlets, with the Beefeater name," said Whitbread restaurant boss Bill Shannon.

"I can't rule out that we won't revisit the working brief and we do agonise continually over the name, as with any business, but it's too easy to dismiss it.

"If you re-brand, you go into a whole new world where nobody knows who you are or what you do and for 200-strong chain that's a big thing."

The company has converted a number of Beefeaters to the Out & Out restaurant brand but the transfers had not proved successful enough to provide a solution.

Mr Shannon said Whitbread was looking at ways to make the chain more appealing to "trialists" and a younger audience whilst remaining relevant to its existing customer base.

Mr Shannon also said that a number of Beefeater outlets would be sold. The chain, which stretches from Inverness to Exeter, serves 250,000 people every week.

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