Insight

AlixPartners CGA Market Recovery Monitor

This quarterly monitor (formerly Market Growth Monitor) provides a snapshot of pub, bar and restaurant supply in Great Britain. All the data is drawn from CGA’s Outlet Index, a comprehensive, continually updated database of all licensed premises. The Market Recovery Monitor is delivered in partnership with AlixPartners.

Latest Issue: Regional Restrictions Hit Licensed Premises Hard in October, as Nationwide Lockdown in England Begins

A host of COVID-related government restrictions around the UK in October brought an abrupt halt to the summer’s recovery period for licensed premises. Curfew requirements in England, widespread closures in Scotland and a total lockdown in Wales drove down the percentage of Britain’s licensed premises trading at the end of the month to just 69.9%.

This represents a fall of more than ten percentage points on the sites trading at the end of September (80.4%)—equivalent to nearly 12,000 sites closing their doors during the month. Just over half of the closures were in Wales, where all pubs and restaurants closed for two weeks. At the same time the numbers were also further reduced in England as a result of the new three-tier system of regional restrictions that were introduced—an indication that the sector could be substantially reduced after the end of England’s second lockdown. However, this week’s positive news regarding vaccine development will be seen as a potential lifeline to operators. This offers the prospect of a return to more normal trading conditions in the first half of next year and may give financial stakeholders the confidence they need to provide any further funding necessary to bridge to this time.

  • Just over 78,000 premises were open at the end of October, down from over 90,000 the previous month;
  • by the end of the month, only just over half (52.8%) of licensed premises in "Very High" alert—or Tier 3—areas of England were open, well below the 83.6% and 82.8% open in "Medium" and "High" alert areas respectively
  • the activation of restrictions in Scotland during October resulted in just 35.4% (3,641) of sites being open at the end of the month, down from 7,849 premises open at the end of September

UK-wide, drink-led sites suffered more than food-led, down from 76.5% trading at the end of September to 63.1%, compared to 87.1% down to 79.9% for food-led premises

The report also highlights the continued plight of independent operators compared to managed sites, the latter of whom will likely find themselves in a better position to ride out the storm:

  • Fewer than two-thirds (63.1%) of independent businesses were trading, compared to more than four in five (81.8%) sites ran by managed operators.

Hope remains for brisk festive trading-post lockdown during December but, while the extension of the Government’s furlough scheme into 2021 will provide some additional security, this also raises questions for what business will look like in the New Year for licensed premises across the UK. Any further restrictions would present huge concerns on prospects for the sector, increasing the likelihood of further restructuring activity.

READ THE NOVEMBER ISSUE

A host of COVID-related government restrictions around the UK in October brought an abrupt halt to the summer’s recovery period for licensed premises. Curfew requirements in England, widespread closures in Scotland and a total lockdown in Wales drove down the percentage of Britain’s licensed premises trading at the end of the month to just 69.9%.

This represents a fall of more than ten percentage points on the sites trading at the end of September (80.4%)—equivalent to nearly 12,000 sites closing their doors during the month. Just over half of the closures were in Wales, where all pubs and restaurants closed for two weeks. At the same time the numbers were also further reduced in England as a result of the new three-tier system of regional restrictions that were introduced—an indication that the sector could be substantially reduced after the end of England’s second lockdown. However, this week’s positive news regarding vaccine development will be seen as a potential lifeline to operators. This offers the prospect of a return to more normal trading conditions in the first half of next year and may give financial stakeholders the confidence they need to provide any further funding necessary to bridge to this time.

  • Just over 78,000 premises were open at the end of October, down from over 90,000 the previous month;
  • by the end of the month, only just over half (52.8%) of licensed premises in "Very High" alert—or Tier 3—areas of England were open, well below the 83.6% and 82.8% open in "Medium" and "High" alert areas respectively
  • the activation of restrictions in Scotland during October resulted in just 35.4% (3,641) of sites being open at the end of the month, down from 7,849 premises open at the end of September

UK-wide, drink-led sites suffered more than food-led, down from 76.5% trading at the end of September to 63.1%, compared to 87.1% down to 79.9% for food-led premises

The report also highlights the continued plight of independent operators compared to managed sites, the latter of whom will likely find themselves in a better position to ride out the storm:

  • Fewer than two-thirds (63.1%) of independent businesses were trading, compared to more than four in five (81.8%) sites ran by managed operators.

Hope remains for brisk festive trading-post lockdown during December but, while the extension of the Government’s furlough scheme into 2021 will provide some additional security, this also raises questions for what business will look like in the New Year for licensed premises across the UK. Any further restrictions would present huge concerns on prospects for the sector, increasing the likelihood of further restructuring activity.

READ THE NOVEMBER ISSUE

THE MARKET RECOVERY MONITOR ARCHIVE

October 2020

While four in five of Britain’s licensed premises have managed to start trading again, the increase in trading restrictions in Scotland and the likely imposition of further restrictions across other parts of the UK threatens to turn this trend into reverse.


September 2020

Just over three quarters (76.3%) of all licensed premises across Britain were open for business again by the end of August. More than 15,500 venues re-opened throughout the month—equivalent to around 500 a day—marking an increase of more than 14 percentage points since the last edition of the Market Recovery Monitor.

 

August 2020

Three in five (62%) of Britain’s licensed premises were back in business by the end of July following the lifting of COVID-19 lockdown restrictions on 4 July. Reopening has been uneven across different segments, with pubs opening ahead of restaurants and London lagging behind the rest of England. 

 

May 2020

As Britain’s hospitality market takes a deep breath and tentatively looks to reboot from 4 July, the scale of the toll taken by the COVID-19 crisis is still unclear, with most operators suggesting a phased approach to re-openings.

 

March 2020

There are mixed fortunes for Britain’s pub and restaurant industries as we move into a new decade, with December seeing the lowest rate of year-on-year decline for pubs, bars and other licensed premises since 2018, but closures continuing.

 

December 2019

As Britain continues to lose around seven licensed premises a day, there are small signs of a slowdown, with year-on-year decline at its lowest since June 2018. Drink-led community pubs and locals continue to bear the brunt of closures, shutting at an average of 19 a week.

 

August 2019

The number of licensed premises in Britain is continuing a steady year-on-year decline, with 2,920 fewer than 12 months ago. Our latest Market Growth Monitor also shows a drop in restaurant numbers and a move from the leased model of drink-led pubs. But it’s not all doom and gloom, some types of cuisine are flourishing, and emerging food trends could be good news for group restaurants.

 

May 2019

This quarter's Market Growth Monitor shows that the UK has 2,753 fewer pubs, bars, restaurants and other licenced premises than 12 months ago. The 2.3% decrease over the last year—the equivalent of approximately 53 closures per week— is the seventh successive quarter of year-on-year decline, although the pace has slowed from the 3.1% decrease as reported in last quarter’s edition.

 

February 2019

This quarter's review of the Market Growth Monitor shows the UK has 3,847 fewer pubs, bars, restaurants and other licenced premises than 12 months ago. The 3.1% decrease over the last year—the equivalent of more than 10 net closures per day—continues the trend of net closures for the fourth quarter in a row.

 

December 2018

This quarter's Market Growth Monitor shows that the UK has 3,878 fewer pubs, bars, restaurants and other licenced premises than 12 months ago. The 3.2% decrease over the last year—the equivalent of more than 10 net closures per day—marks an acceleration of closures for the third quarter in a row. The 3.2% decline in the year to September 2018 follows a 1.3% fall in the year to March 2018 and a 2.5% drop in the year to June 2018.

 

September 2018

This quarter's Market Growth Monitor shows that the UK has 3,116 fewer pubs, bars, restaurants and other licenced premises than 12 months ago. The 2.5% decrease is the equivalent of an average eight net closures per day over the last year. 

 

June 2018

For the first time since the launch of the Market Growth Monitor, the total number of restaurants in the UK has dropped over the last 12 months – a culmination of market conditions and competitive pressures.

 

April 2018

1-year and 5-year movements in site numbers over a range of industry sub-sectors and shows that although total licensed premises remained relatively flat, many restaurant brands continue to grow, despite challenging conditions.

 

December 2017

Britain’s number of licensed premises remained level in the year to September 2017 despite rising challenges for pub and restaurant operators.

 

September 2017

Dynamic new restaurant operators continue to expand and disrupt Britain’s eating out sector despite a host of challenges.

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