Some seven in 10 (70%) restaurant, pub and bar leaders have expressed their optimism about their businesses’ prospects for the next 12 months, according to the latest Business Confidence Survey from CGA.
The survey showed that nearly three in five (58%) leaders felt optimistic about prospects for the general market over the next 12 months.
Furthermore, the results revealed that just over two thirds (69%) of businesses are currently trading at a profit, which was more than four times the 16% who were doing so three months ago.
However, the confidence level represents a drop of 13% points from the second-quarter survey when optimism was “inflated” by the reopening of hospitality venues.
Despite the rise in optimism, more than four in five business leaders would like to see a VAT reduction extended beyond March 2022 (84%), business rates reform (81%) and business rates relief in 2022/23 (81%).
Karl Chessell, CGA’s director hospitality operators and food, EMEA, said: “It’s encouraging to see such strong levels of confidence in hospitality leadership, especially given the turmoil of the last 18 months and the many cost and logistical pressures facing businesses at the moment.
“But the damage that COVID-19 has wreaked on the sector will be felt for years to come, and with debt repayments and tax rises ahead, profits are going to be needed for months to come if businesses’ finances are to be secured.”