More restaurant groups to fail before year-end, analysts predict

At least two or three more restaurant groups are expected to fall before the end of 2018, analysts from real estate agents Christie and Co have predicted.

In the first half of 2018, a number of high profile operators have turned to company voluntary arrangements (CVAs) as a means to manage underperforming sites. Groups such as Jamie’s Italian, Prezzo, Byron and Carluccio’s have taken this route.

This includes also London-based operators, such as Barbecoa, Conran & Prescott, Hummus Brothers and more recently the Gaucho Group which has fallen into administration.

However, in its half-year review, Christie and Co said other major operators have continued to prosper; Wagamama has shown growth in sales and its number of sites, with further expansion overseas. Nando’s reported double digit growth and has continued to acquire new sites nationally.

In comparison, the outlook seemed relatively positive for independents and smaller operators.

Independents such as Mowgli, Honest Burger and Giggling Squid appear to have taken advantage of opportunities with many finding success with street food concepts. The report found that small restaurant groups outside London expanded by nearly 20% last year.

It said this was because independent companies were focusing on its food offering and providing a great experience rather than following a “cookie cutter” approach. It said such restaurants were attracting more diners who sought new and interesting eateries.

Christie and Co also predicted that operators who adapted alongside technology and social media would thrive. It said the most adopted technology trend was the rise of home delivery services and apps, followed by contactless payments and click and collect services.

Christie and Co will release its Business Outlook 2019, presenting an annual overview and year ahead forecast for all of its sectors, including restaurants, in January 2019.

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