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Eating out growth boosts pub and restaurant sales

Published:  11 December, 2014

Pub and restaurant groups saw like-for-like sales grow 3.4% in November, marking the 20th consecutive month of growth for the sector.

Pub and restaurant groups saw like-for-like sales grow 3.4% in November, marking the 20th consecutive month of growth for the sector.

That's according to the Coffer Peach Business Tracker, which analyses sales from 28 groups including Mitchells & Butlers, Carluccio and Pizza Express.

The latest figures also showed that London was more buoyant than elsewhere in the country with like-for-like sales up 6.1%, compared to 2.4% outside the M25.

"Managed pub groups saw 2.8% LFL growth, with casual dining chains up 4.8%," said Peter Martin, vice president of CGA Peach, the business insight consultancy that produces the Tracker.

Eating outEating out is now "ingrained" in the British way of life, says Peter MartinSource: Mitchells & ButlersFood sales are growing faster than drink in pub groups - accounting for 45% of revenue in managed pubs.

"Eating-out is now ingrained in the British way-of-life, and for the pub groups in our sample, food sales are still growing faster than drink - up 4.0% in November against a 1.5% increase for drinks," added Martin. "Overall, food sales account for an average 45% of revenue in managed pub chains."

Total sales, which includes the impact of new openings, were up 6.8% against last November with total sales for restaurant groups ahead 10%. This demonstrates the continued roll-out of casual dining brands, particularly outside of London.

Trevor Watson, director at Davis Coffer Lyons, said: "The figures continue to show steady growth in the sector. Consumer spending power will be sustained in 2015 as a result of falling oil prices, which will help to ensure the casual dining and pub sectors continue on their upward trajectory in terms of sales figures. The London market continues to be the principal engine of the sector and we do not see any reason for this to change in the immediate future."

Paul Newman, head of leisure and hospitality at Baker Tilly, added: "This month we again see another set of cracking results for a jubilant sector. Total sales growth continues to build a head of steam as the evenings have grown longer, posting 6.8% growth, which represents the highest monthly sales increase since April. The strong recent sales growth figures are particularly impressive against a backdrop of stagnant UK wages."