Pub chains enjoy good summer trade

By Ewan Turney

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Coffer peach business, Pizza hut, Coffer peach business tracker

Harvester: one of the M&B brands in the tracker
Harvester: one of the M&B brands in the tracker
Leading managed pub and restaurant chains have reported like-for-like sales growth of 1.5% in August on last year. The Coffer Peach Business Tracker...

Leading managed pub and restaurant chains have reported like-for-like sales growth of 1.5% in August on last year.

The Coffer Peach Business Tracker monitors the performance of 17 leading pub and restaurant operators including Mitchells & Butlers, Whitbread, Pizza Hut, Punch Pub Co, Gondola and Tragus.

It shows total sales for August wee 2.9% up on last year and follows a 1.9% like-for-like increase in July and 1.4% increase in June.

"The performance of the brands featured in the Tracker remains solid, particularly in light of the relatively volatile trading that other smaller operators are seeing in the market at present," said Richard Hathaway, head of travel, leisure and tourism at KPMG.

However, month-on-month sales were down 16.1% in August compared to July.

"This could be due in part to the end of the World Cup, coupled with poorer weather conditions," said Hathaway.

"If so, this may sound alarm bells for Autumn sales if poorer weather conditions take hold."

Trevor Watson, director at Davis Coffer Lyons, part of the Coffer Group, added: "It seems likely that the recovery is being led in the south east of England, where the impact of sustained low interest rates continues to buoy consumer confidence and spending.

"The clutch of recent M&A activity also demonstrates that savvy investors believe the sector offer opportunity. The major unknown, which is now rapidly approaching, is the Chancellor's spending review in October, the details of which have the potential to de-rail the recovery nationwide."

Jonathan Leinster, head of European leisure and tobacco research, at UBS Investment Bank, said: "We expect that when new menus are introduced this and next month, operators will engineer their food offering to incorporate price rises. This will be done to anticipate the January VAT rise, at least in the food mix of the businesses.

"Companies are expressing caution over consumer spending in advance of the October spending budget. Since we expect public sector spending cuts to be phased over four years and to occur while the private sector is experiencing a modest recovery, we do not share the companies' caution, at least over this matter.

Related topics: Other operators

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