Latest Pub News from Langton Capital
Pub opening hours will be extended over the weekend of the royal wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle in May. The move follows calls from the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) to extend hours, asserting that it could give a £10m boost to the trade.
Enterprise Inns Group yesterday bought back 130,411 of its own shares for cancellation at 143.75p per share.
The latest Visa UK consumer spending index has shown household spending fell by 1% in teal terms in December vs November. This represents the 4th consecutive fall. Over the year as a whole, spending fell by 0.3% in real terms. Visa says ‘Christmas rounded off another lean year for retailers.’ It continues ‘despite some large retailers signalling a strong Christmas performance, it is clear that the high street has suffered recently, while online spending has held up.’ Visa’s survey is based on its own information (just card spending) but is adjusted to take account of people’s growing preference for paying by card.
Majestic Wine has reported sales over the 10wk Xmas period were +3.2% at the group level. Majestic reminds investors that it delivers c.30% of total annual sales during the Christmas trading period. LfL retail sales were +1.3%. CEO Rowan Gormley comments ‘the team performed brilliantly. The fact that we have been able to grow sales and maintain margins shows that our winning formula of fabulous customer service from delightful people and delicious wines at fair prices works even when times are tough.’ Gormley adds ‘we are on track to achieve our £500m sales goal by 2019, on track to deliver market expectations for the current financial year, and on track to accelerate investment in new customers, new winemakers and more fantastic wines.’
Stock Spirits has updated on full year trading saying overall trading for the year ‘was slightly ahead of our expectations.’ It reports markets in Poland & the Czech Republic ‘continued to show growth in both volume and value terms.’
The BBPA’s chief executive, Brigid Simmonds, commented: ‘This is great news for pubs and pub-goers and shows the government has listened to our calls to put pubs at the heart of the Royal Wedding celebrations. Visitors see the Great British pub as a cultural icon, almost as much as the Royal Family. Extended hours would give a £10m boost to the trade and make the most of the expected increase in tourism.’
Meanwhile, Kate Nicholls of the ALMR, said: ‘Pubs are at the heart of communities and many people will want to celebrate the special occasion in their local, as they have done for the Queen’s Jubilee or previous Royal Weddings. Extended trading for the wedding will provide a welcome boost to the UK’s pubs, restaurants, hotels and bars, so a proposal to extend trading hours is a sensible step by the Government and should provide customers and businesses with a chance to celebrate.’
Baijiu Beer Company, a Sheffield-based company that makes craft beer combined with the Chinese spirit Baijiu, is set to ship its first international order after only three months of development in the Chinese market.
Pub operator and brewer, Brakspear have appointed Steve Head as BDM. The group’s chief executive, Tom Davies said: ‘Steve has an excellent track record, regularly beating sales and profit targets in all his previous management roles, and achieving outstanding returns on pub redevelopments. We were impressed by his evident talent for all aspects of the BDM role and his experience, and are confident he will be a great asset to the Brakspear team’.
The number of retailers entering into administration increased by 27% in 2017 to 118 according to data from Deloitte. Dan Butters at Deloitte said: ‘We have seen a significant increase in retail insolvencies in the last twelve months including some well-known names. We see insolvencies in higher value categories, such as furniture, as a leading indicator that falling consumer confidence, and a drop in consumer spending, is starting to bite. This has implications for retail sub-sectors with a lower price point which typically take longer to feel the impact of reduced consumer spending’.
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