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The green shoots of recovery start to sprout in the restaurant market!

Posted on 16th September 2009 in Industry News, Interesting Stuff
Written by: Fiona Rickard

There are some interesting highlights in the August UK Restaurant Leader Report 2009 commissioned by Allegra Strategies.  This survey talked to 150 restaurant industry leaders and concluded that although trading conditions remain difficult for many restaurant operators, there are signs that the economy is beginning to improve. As a result there is a diminishing concern over the economic climate and operators will now begin to plan for recovery:

Trading conditions remain difficult for the UK restaurant market with nearly 60% of operators reporting negative like-for-like performance in the quarter to June 2009.  However the level of concern with the economy is diminishing.

Operators with an average turnover of less than £10 per head have been less affected by the recession and brands such as Whitbread, McDonald’s and Subway are well positioned as a result.

However the recession combined with empowered consumers has increased competition and resulted in substantial discounting.  This legacy will live on as 85% of restaurant leaders agree that the value expectations of customers has risen and that consumers are increasingly knowledgeable and demanding greater choice and value.  The net result is that they are more selective and less loyal to previously favoured restaurants.

However the future looks bright as 63% of industry leaders agree that consumers will be eating out of the home more regularly in five years’ time.  64% predict that Fast Casual dining is the business model that will grow the fastest in the next three to five years as consumers become more mobile and lead more informal lifestyles.  Healthy eating concepts, British cuisine and South East Asian food will be the order of the day!!!

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