The Restaurant Magazine Commentary

Restaurant Sector takes stock

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Market forced to take stock following corporates, Jamie's Italian, Prezzo and Byron all announcing a slimming down of operations, the casual-dining sector is under some scrutiny.

Writing in the March edition of Restaurant Magazine,  Stefan Chomka comments: 

"I can't recall a time when the casual-dining sector has come under as much scrutiny as it is at the moment, primarily down to a certain celebrity chef-owned Italian restaurant chain."

The saga of Jamie's Italian has been unfolding for some time with six restaurants closed at the start of last year and another 12 to close in a recent announcement.  

Jamie's is by no means alone in feeling the pinch of rising costs, market saturation and expansion into unsuitable locations, Byron's recent woes have been well documented.

After years of often unchecked expansion many are being forced to take stock with only this week another, Prezzo announcing a slimming down of operations.

The Restaurant Agency in its own commentary focussed on the slghtly smaller independent operators and has seen a more cautious optimism with several positive acquisitions and "smaller operators" around Scotland seeking organic growth in narrower geographical areas and often selecting and focussing on a cluster of say 3-6 sites. to more easily manage the operation and costs.  By carefully selecting their sites with often minimal inward investment as they buy existing businesses this ensures much of the infrastructure is already in place and the massive capital outlays paid by their larger counterparts acquiring vacant space are largely and significantly reduced.

An extract above from The Restaurant Magazine, March 2018

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