ALMR: give us 6 months to sort it out

By MA reporter

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Licensed multiple retailers Dispute resolution Alternative dispute resolution Almr

ALMRchief executive Nick Bish has asked for six months to save the pub industry
ALMRchief executive Nick Bish has asked for six months to save the pub industry
The Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers has written to BEC chairman Peter Luff asking for six months to sort the industry's problems out.

The Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) has written to the MP who headed the probe into pubcos asking for six months to let the industry sort out its problems.

The Morning Advertiser ​can reveal that the ALMR wants legally binding changes to be introduced in the relationship between pubcos and tenants, rather than go for a voluntary code of practice.

ALMR told Peter Luff, chairman of the Business and Enterprise Committee (BEC), that it wants to set up an alternative dispute resolution process involving groups and companies representing the full spectrum of interests in the pub and beer industry.

A meeting to discuss the plans has been called for 18 June. However, the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) will not attend.

Other groups and companies asked to participate are: the BII, the Campaign for Real Ale, Fair Pint, Punch, Marston's, the Federation of Licensed Victuallers Associations, the Guild of Master Victuallers, Charles Wells, Everards and Adnams.

BBPA director of communications Mark Hastings said: "We will not be attending this meeting, but are more than happy to work with ALMR on this and indeed any other issue affecting the trade.

"We are committed to ongoing constructive dialogue with Government, MPs and other stakeholders on the tie and the issues that have been raised by the BEC report. We are actively pursuing a range of proposals to highlight the ongoing benefits of the tie, the improvements that have been made to the model in recent months and further changes that could be made.

"We will look at the proposal that has been made carefully and constructively and consider how best to support and positively contribute to the process.

"We share the perspective that the successful resolution of these issues best lies with the industry and in open and active engagement with all stakeholders. We are determined to focus on solutions that will ensure the long-term viability of the great British pub."

The BEC report called for a referral to the Competition Commission but Bish argues that this isn't in the interests of the industry.

The ALMR believes any referral would mean that investment across the pub sector is put on hold for two years or more as the issues are examined.

In addition, the ALMR believes Government intervention would lead to a wholly unpredictable outcome.

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