Langton House – 2019-07-31 – Just Eat, Greggs, Puttshack, & Other:
Just Eat, M&B, Greggs, Puttshack, & Other
A DAY IN THE LIFE:
So, we finished our three days by the side of Lake Garda, checked out Verona (and the Italian national rail network) and now we’re in Munich after lunch in Innsbruck and we can confirm that, if it’s 30 degrees and sunny in Northern Italy, it may well be 12 degrees and drizzling by the time you get to the Brenner Pass.
But anyway, we’re throwing ourselves into the spirit of things here in Muenchen though not until after a bit of a disagreement as to whether we should go to the puppet museum or the Hofbrauhaus first.
The Hofbrauhaus won out and, if you start on the beers before 12 noon, there are certain things that are likely to happen thereafter and a visit to the puppet museum isn’t one of them.
Hence, we decided that a trip up to the Englischer Garten and the beer garden below the Chinesischer Turm made perfect sense, followed by a lie down in the sun and most of the rest is somewhat hazy (and hopefully deniable).
Anyway, elements of Langton are on holiday this week and next. The email could be a little bit shorter. On to the news:
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GENERAL NEWS – PUBS & RESTAURANTS:
Just Eat reports H1 revenue up 30% yoy to £464.5m but profit before tax down 98% to £0.8m, reflecting planned investments in delivery and iFood. Orders on the platform were up 21% to 123.8m, with 2m net new customers joining Just Eat in H1.
Just Eat reports it is ‘executing at pace, on track to meet full year guidance’. Peter Duffy, interim CEO, said ‘Performance in our UK business strengthened in Q2, our Canadian and European businesses are performing well and Australia has returned to top line growth with our delivery operations achieving gross profitability.’
We are pleased with sales performance which remains convincingly ahead of the market. Whilst growth across the market during the early weeks of the period reflected the World Cup and sunny weather last year, we are encouraged by how growth has strengthened in recent weeks. We remain confident in the momentum we have gained, and which continues to build, driven by the ongoing impact of numerous Ignite 2 initiatives
Greggs will trial extended opening hours across some of its stores. Some branches already stay open late, with one in Westminster closing at 23:00 and another in Newcastle opening until 20:30 or 21:00.
The UK House of Lords EU Energy and Environment Sub-Committee, says EU proposals to ban terms such as ‘veggie burger’ and ‘vegan steak’ would ‘reduce consumer clarity, be a barrier to growth for a burgeoning sector of the food industry, and ultimately make it more challenging for people to reduce the amount of meat in their diet at a time when Government should be seeking to encourage the opposite.’
The Heineken controlled, Star Pubs & Bars has announced it will invest £6.73m into its site’s beer gardens, as part of the group’s wider £50m revamp plans. Star Pubs & Bars property director Chris Moore said: ‘Pubgoers increasingly want to eat and drink outside. It’s something many people enjoy when they’re travelling abroad and they love getting that same holiday feel at their local’.
Puttshack has announced it will open a new £5m site in Watford in Summer 2020. Puttshack CEO Joe Vrankin said: ‘Puttshack is changing the competitive socializing landscape by combining mini golf with cutting edge technology and a first-class food and drink offering to deliver a high quality, immersive experience that appeals to a broad customer demographic’.
The Italian drinks group, Campari has reported H1 2019 sales up 8% to €848m. CEO of the group Kunze-Concewitz commented: ‘After a very strong start to the year, our positive business momentum continued in the second quarter 2019, the peak season for aperitifs, helped by the late Easter effect, despite the tough comparable base as well as the poor weather in May across Europe’.
Researchers from King’s College London have reported that over £100m has been cut from funds for tackling alcoholism in England since 2012. Colin Drummond, professor of addiction services at King’s commetned: ‘The services that are being cut have a strong evidence base of effectiveness and cost effectiveness. For every £1 you spend on treatment, you save over £3 in NHS and social care costs, so cutting these services is a false economy’.
The Irish Brewers Association (IBA) reports sales of low and non-alcoholic beer increased by 60% In Ireland between 2017 and 2018, to 30,000hlr. The figures reflect a similar trend in the UK, where sales of low and alcohol-free beers jumped 28% in the year to February 2019.
HOLIDAYS & LEISURE TRAVEL:
EasyHotel has exchanged contracts to acquire a 87-room Ibis Palais des Congres, Nice. The €11.7m investment will immediately rebrand and open as an EasyHotel, with completion expected to take place in October.
Sterling slumps to its lowest level for more than two years, squeezing holidaymakers this summer. The GBP fell to $1.2230 and €1.1004 over no deal Brexit fears, with some expecting GBP to fall as low as $1.18 and €1.05.
The FT reports InterContinental Hotels has become the first global hotel company to commit to cutting the use of miniature toiletries, removing 200m of plastic bathroom products used annually throughout its estate of 843,000 rooms by 2021.
Deloitte reports that people spent less on longer duration holidays in Q2, opting to wait for late deals or planning shorter breaks instead. A third of respondents to the survey said they were expecting to reduce their overall leisure spend in the next six months.
Newcastle-based Inn Collection Group reveals plans to open a hotel on Sunderland’s coast in Seaburn.
Grab announces plans to invest $2bn into the Indonesian market, aiming to create a next-generation transport network, powered by electric vehicles and geo-mapping technology.
START THE DAY WITH A SONG:
Yesterday’s song was Why by Annie lennox. Today, who sang:
“If blood will flow when flesh and steel are one,
Drying in the color of the evening sun
Tomorrow’s rain will wash the stains away”
RETAIL WITH NICK BUBB:
Next: We flagged yesterday that back on May 1st, with the strong Q1 update, Next said that, despite better than expected 4.5% full price sales growth in Q1, the market should be braced for something like -0.5% in Q2, given the strength of the comps, after last year’s summer heatwave. The recent mini-heatwave had given the City some hope that Next would be able to meet their forecast, in today’s Q2 update, but they have actually smashed it with +4.0%! Online was up by 12.0% and Retail was only down by 4.2%. The outcome was slightly distorted by July and Sale timing/promotions, but even in May and June combined sales were up by 3.0% and Next have decided to use that growth rate as their new and higher target for the full year. As a result Next have edged their full year PBT forecast up from £715m to £725m, despite Brexit uncertainties! There is actually no mention of the word “Brexit” in
Consumer Confidence Watch: The widely followed monthly GFK UK Consumer Confidence survey came out overnight and, unexpectedly, the overall index edged up by two points to -11, despite “no deal Brexit” fears, although it is important to note that interviewing was only carried out during the 1st-14th July period. Joe Staton, Client Strategy Director at GfK, says: “Pre-Brexit consumers are marginally more bullish this month with improvements in levels of confidence across most measures. Although it’s too soon to judge any impact of a post-Boris bounce, we can report a boost in attitudes to our personal financial situation in the face of low interest rates and day-to-day inflation, a buoyant labour market and growth in real wages…However, the coming months to the October 31st departure date will test the strength of this confidence. Will consumers greet the Halloween Brexit deadline with