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Weather boosts September pub and restaurant sales

Friday 21st October 2011

Britain’s leading pub and restaurant groups saw collective like-for-like sales grow 2.8% in September, according to latest Coffer Peach Business Tracker data. Total sales, which include the effect of new openings, were up 6.9% on September 2010.

"Despite the gloom in other parts of the economy, the public is still prepared to go out to eat and drink – and the hot weather at the end of the month provided an added boost for business," said Peter Martin of Peach Factory, the market consultancy which produces the sector Tracker, in partnership with KPMG, UBS and the Coffer Group.
The data comes from 24 major pub and restaurant operators trading across the UK.

According to the Met Office, last month was the warmest September since 2006 and the equal-sixth warmest in the last 100 years with the average temperature 1.5°C above the 1971-2000 norm. It also saw below average rainfall.

"Both pubs and restaurants saw sales ahead of last year, although pubs saw the biggest boost from the good weather," said Martin.

The September figures follow a 0.6% increase in like-for-like sales in August, despite the effects of the riots, and a 1.0% increase in July. Month on month, September sales were 18% up on August, reflecting the fact that it was a five-week against a four-week month.

Martin said: "The eating out market is proving remarkably resilient although it remains a fiercely competitive marketplace. Consumers are turning to brands increasingly in search of quality, consistency and value, but the fight for customer loyalty is intense, with both pub and casual dining chains investing heavily in new concepts and revamping and rolling-out existing offerings."

As a result, the eating and drinking out-of-home market has continued to outperform the retail sector. According to the British Retail Consortium / KPMG Retail Sales Monitor, like-for-like retail sales were only 0.3% higher on September 2010, with total sales up 2.5%.

"However, operators are aware that the market will remain tough," Martin said.

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Mike Jones





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