City Pub Group nears 2019 trading levels

By Emily Hawkins contact

- Last updated on GMT

City Pub Group: the operator bought the freehold of the Roundhouse in Wandsworth Common (pictured) for a total consideration of £1.1m
City Pub Group: the operator bought the freehold of the Roundhouse in Wandsworth Common (pictured) for a total consideration of £1.1m

Related tags: City pub, Clive watson, London, Wales, England, coronavirus, Multi-site pub operators

The City Pub Group has reported trading levels at 90% of 2019 levels since pubs opened after the third lockdown.

Despite stringent restrictions since pubs first reopened outside on 12 April, the pub company said it was pleased with trade at the 42 of its 48 sites that reopened in south England and Wales.

The group said it felt the impact of social distancing rules and a cap on booking numbers during the Euros football tournament where many customers were deterred from watching matches at the pub.

Once remaining restrictions are scrapped on 19 July, the pub group believes it can build trade over the remainder of the year beyond 2019 levels.

The group bought the freehold of the Roundhouse in Wandsworth Common, south London for a total consideration of £1.1m, as it had four years left on the lease.

Encouraging trading

‘’We have been very encouraged by how we have traded since reopening despite the continuing restrictions,”  City Pub Group executive chairman Clive Watson, said.

“We are cash generative and trading profitably demonstrating the strength of our business model.”

He added: “I would like to thank personally all our staff and suppliers for their ongoing commitment. We have put in place a strong platform for growth, and we believe that when we are allowed to trade restriction free we will build to levels higher than 2019."

Pandemic lockdowns and restrictions saw the company post a hit to revenue of £34.2m in the 52 weeks ended 27 December 2020.

The group has been readying itself to expand to up to 100 sites and looking at “large market towns in southern England and Wales", Watson told The Morning Advertiser​ earlier this year.

The multiple-site operator acquired a 49% stake in the Kensington Park Hotel​​ and increased shareholding in Mosaic Pub and Dining Group​​ to 24%.

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