Stonegate might be the biggest player in the tenanted and leased market, but they remain surprisingly agile and despite the scale of the business, remain close and strong relationships with the operators running their sites.
The purchase of EI Group at the start of the crisis might have proven too difficult for some businesses, but the Stonegate team rose to the challenge and have not only weathered the storm with some impressive support on offer, but are in a strong position to embrace the opportunities the post-pandemic market has to offer.
Flexibility is impressive within this business, with the willingness to offer the right support in the right circumstances - there’s not a one-size-fits all approach, despite the scale of the operation.
The strength of that support is reflected in the length of tenure among tenants, and the company has even created a specialist division to offer tailored and more intensive support to pubs that need the help.
Punch Pubs & Co
Another previous title holder, having taken the win in 2020, Punch are back and looking to build on their previous success.
A leaner and more focused business, Punch has navigated itself well through the choppy waters of the pandemic and recently landed itself new owners with plans to drive the business forward.
The recent purchase of the Young’s tenanted estate was a stand out moment for the business in the post-pandemic environment, and the company continues to move forward in innovative ways, with the launch of joint venture schemes and new brands and concepts that are making waves. The pandemic has also prompted a revolution in communications, and the company has now created its own TV channel to get information across to it’s operators.
Good investment into operations and systems are also good to see with the company looking to offer the best opportunities and insights for their operator partners.
Last year’s winners, Greene King has been working hard to hold onto their crown after scooping the win for some sterling work during the pandemic.
Strong investment throughout the pandemic has left the pubcos operators in good shape as we emerged from the crisis and hit the ground running and a good programme of investment moving forward to helping to drive that further forward.
The change in ownership and management of the business seems to have played to the leased and tenanted sectors strengths, with the new leadership taking a much longer term view of the business which is paying dividends.
That said, this isn’t a company that is standing still, and it continues to innovate and adapt its offer, as seen with the launch of its new hybrid model Hive which it is in the early stages of rolling out across its estate.