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Here you can find licensed trade news and updates, the weekly e-newsletter INNfocus, past editions of the BII News (our quarterly magazine), and hear all about our latest industry campaigns.

Restaurant & Bar Tech Live

Restaurant and Bar Tech Live makes its much-anticipated return to ExCeL, London on the 19th & 20th October, forming THE ultimate event to help you boost your profits, build your brand and grow your business.

With all the exciting and educational features we have lined up for you, it is no surprise that Restaurant and Bar Tech Live has been branded Europe’s leading event for the technologies driving the profits of restaurants and bars! We have an incredible line-up of keynote speakers ready to share their expert advice and insight into the industry!
 
Hear from representatives from your favourite brands in the industry such as Punch Pubs, McDonald’s and Inception Group. Our panel debates are also an interesting feature of the expo, as you can hear from like-minded professionals discuss prevalent topics that will help you and your business grow! 

And that’s not everything! We also have Innovation Awards with many worthy winners that you can connect with, their innovative products may inspire you to be creative with your own ideas and could be the nudge you needed to stay above the competition!

The event will give 4000 industry-defining leaders access to 300 exhibitors and their plethora of innovative products, ideas, and strategies! Our event is the ultimate platform for essential networking opportunities, as you will be immersed in a hub of passion and innovation! Connect with industry professionals, and you will never look back!

Europe’s leading event for restaurant and bar owners is also running alongside 5 other industry-leading events, collectively forming #FES22, THE biggest business growth event dedicated to the world of food & drink. 

So what are you waiting for? Whether you’re an independent establishment or a big QSR, this is THE place to be.

Save the 19th & 20th October in your calendar and secure your free ticket now!

BII launches #notjustapub campaign

The British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) has today launched their #notjustapub campaign, inspired by member Emma Gibbon from the Plough Inn at Prestbury, who shared her passion for pubs and the local people and businesses they support recently on her social media.

They are calling on pubs and loyal customers across the UK to write to their local MPs, asking them to raise the urgent need for wide ranging support for our nations’ vital and vibrant pubs with the Chancellor, Kwasi Kwarteng, ahead of the mini-budget later this week.

The Prime Minister, Liz Truss, announced emergency support for businesses with the 6-month energy price guarantee on 8th September, but the sad passing of the Queen has delayed further communication on the full detail of the support measures to be put in place.

Pubs across the UK need urgent clarity around the impact that these measures will have on their businesses, as they face an uncertain winter of huge inflationary pressures and escalating energy costs, alongside chronic staff shortages and reduced spend in their venues.

Steve Alton, BII CEO commented:
“Our members, running vital social hubs at the heart of their communities, have weathered nearly 2 and a half years of closures and disruption through the pandemic and beyond. They are essential businesses, providing safe spaces for people to come together to celebrate, commiserate and connect with friends and family.

“The unique role that pubs play in our communities cannot be overstated. At their centre, the beating heart of pubs across the UK are the licensees who bring these venues to life, alongside their teams, delivering an experience like no other industry can.
“When the pandemic swept across our nation in 2020, our pubs went above and beyond, serving their communities, providing food and vital supplies, caring for the vulnerable members of society and raising thousands of pounds for charity.

“In 2022, they are now facing an even bigger threat to their survival, with unprecedented energy costs and inflationary pressures crippling their businesses.

“We are calling on everyone who loves pubs, from licensees to local customers, to share their support for these integral pillars of our communities by getting involved in the #notjustapub campaign.

“Write to your MP, asking them to take the plight of these essential local businesses to the Chancellor, and share your passion for pubs on social media, to leave Government in no doubt about the vital importance of pubs to each and every high street, village, town and city in the UK.

“Without the support and investment needed from Government, we stand to lose something incredibly special and unique – our Great British Pubs.”

Urgent clarity needed on energy and wider support to save hospitality businesses and jobs this winter, warn industry leaders

Leaders of trade bodies representing pubs, brewers, bars, restaurants and hotels have written to the Chancellor ahead of the fiscal statement later this week warning that a lack of clarity on energy package could be fatal for businesses.

In a letter to Kwasi Kwarteng, representatives from across the hospitality industry called for urgent clarity on the energy cap for businesses and wider support and a long-term plan to secure the future of the sector and save businesses and jobs across the UK. 

They warned that business owners were making decisions now about whether they could survive the winter, and simply could not wait any longer to understand whether they should sign new contracts or not.

The letter came as No 10 said information on energy support for businesses would be announced in the fiscal statement but payments might need to be backdated to October.

The trade associations also urged the Government to think beyond the next six months, noting that ‘whilst the energy cap will be a critical lifeline and stem the situation over the next six months…more is needed to ensure businesses can head into winter knowing they have the chance to not only survive but thrive again’. 

They called on the Chancellor to bring forward the following measures to support the industry both now but also looking to the longer-term: 
an immediate reduction on VAT on all food and drink sales across hospitality
cancellation of business rates for the remainder of this fiscal year for all hospitality businesses regardless of size

In addition, the bodies stated that the regulatory burden placed on the sector needed to be eased, noting how upcoming Alcohol Duty and business rates reform had the potential to further reduce taxes on an already fragile sector. 
In a joint statement industry leaders said: 
“An energy price guarantee for business will provide some short-term relief for businesses on the brink of closure, but more support is needed, as well as a plan beyond the next six months. The initial announcement helped businesses breathe an initial sigh of relief, but most are still in the dark as to how the guarantee might help them.

“Our industry is one of only a few that supports jobs and livelihoods in every single part of the UK, and we have the potential to deliver growth in every single community we serve, but we’re being held back. We need policies that ensure our survival through the winter which will allow us to invest in the long-term potential of our sector, action on the tax burdens that are stunting our growth and a government that understands the extremely critical situation we’re currently in.”

Read the letter here

Healthy Hospo launches free Survive The Winter course

As hospitality faces a difficult winter, Healthy Hospo steps up to support the industry with advice, guidance, and connection.

With the multitude of problems facing the hospitality industry this winter, from uncapped energy prices and the ongoing staffing difficulties to the cost of living crisis and runaway inflation, businesses are going to need every tool and resource possible to get through to the warmer, sunnier days of Spring. 

Healthy Hospo has written a dedicated course aimed at helping hospitality business owners and operators to help them navigate what threatens to be a very difficult winter. The course is filled with advice and actionable steps, such as demanding action from your MP, cost-saving measures for owners and operators, and tactics for reducing energy use. It also covers how to support your staff and includes a resource list of other organisations that can assist.

They have also set up two WhatsApp groups to provide regular updates and encourage conversation between business owners and operators. The hope is that by coming together as an industry we can share advice, knowledge, tips and tricks, and hold a space to rant about what’s going on. 

Healthy Hospo is offering this course for free on their brand new digital learning platform as part of their commitment to helping the hospitality industry. 

Since their launch four years ago, Healthy Hospo has trained and inspired thousands of hospitality professionals around the world to live healthier, happier lives through their pioneering training programs and digital platform, a first for the hospitality industry. 

Healthy Hospo founder Tim Etherington-Judge says: 

“Unless serious and urgent action is taken by the UK’s new government, it’s going to be a real winter of discontent for the hospitality industry. We have been thinking about how we can support our industry through these painful times and this course and WhatsApp groups are our attempt to help owners and operators across the country stay open.”

BII responds to Prime Minister announcement on energy costs

Today’s announcement on the 6 month equivalent match to the domestic energy price guarantee, capping energy costs for small businesses is a welcome acknowledgement of the crippling effect of energy bills on our pubs in every community. However, it is only one element of an overall package of support that will be needed to safeguard these essential local businesses. The British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) remains gravely concerned for the future survival of its members’ pub businesses.  
 
Steve Alton, CEO of the British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) commented:
 
“We have left Government in no doubt about the crushing impact of energy costs on our members’ pub businesses and we are pleased that this has been specifically recognised in today’s announcement.  Beyond the impact of energy, pubs across the nation have seen their long hoped for recovery stopped in its tracks by chronic staff shortages, repaying pandemic specific debts, a crippling rise in the cost of doing business through inflationary rises and a squeeze on consumer spending, with many pubs already loss making.
 
“Escalating energy costs have rendered long-standing essential local businesses simply unviable.  We await the detail on how this price guarantee will be applied for our nations’ pubs and the impact that this will have on their survival. Today’s announcement looks to tackle the specific energy issue and we look forward to again working closely with Government to urgently deliver the wider package of investment that will be needed to allow our members to trade through these exceptional challenges and be at the heart of growth in our economy.”

“Ordering-in” now well-established part of Brits mealtime routine

New research suggests that the phenomenal growth in demand for “ordering in” seen during the pandemic has resulted in long-term changes to consumer dining behaviour, creating a “new normal” where millions of Brits now order take-away and delivery direct from their favourite hospitality brands as part of their regular weekly routine.

The research from KAM, in partnership with e-commerce provider Slerp, found that 22 million Brits now order a take-away or delivery from a restaurant or pub at least once a week. 34% admit to ordering as part of their regular weekday dining and 62% regularly order-in as a “weekend treat.” Generation Z and young families are ordering-in most frequently. 

Katie Jenkins, Marketing Director at KAM: “More like our American neighbours, Brits now take a multi-channel approach to dining, not only eating on-premise but also regularly embracing ‘at-home’ offerings as part of how we feed ourselves and our families. Take-aways and meal delivery is now locked in as an established part of Brits mealtime routine.”

The research found that the majority of online food orders are likely to come from existing customers with 2-in-3 respondents admitting they prefer to order from places that they know and love, with only 30% saying that they actively liked to explore and try new places. 74% of respondents indicate that they order-in to replace cooking at home, not to replace eating out occasions.

“A concern for many hospitality operators has been the impact that take-aways and home delivery might have of their on-premise operations. Will people order delivery to replace dining out? Reassuringly, it seems the answer is no. Offering take-away and delivery is without a doubt enabling venues to feed their customers on more occasions” comments Jenkins.

Despite many consumers still ordering via marketplace apps such as Deliveroo, Just Eat and Uber Eats, 62% said they’d rather order directly from a restaurant or pub, with 1-in-4 consumers saying they expect to download a restaurant/pub specific app in the future. 

And no surprise that the ordering process itself is a key driver of where people are turning for their take-aways and meal deliveries. The online experience will impact physical footfall too with almost half of people (46%) stating that a positive online ordering experience would make them more likely to visit a venue in person.

Loyalty points also have a significant impact on where consumers order: 84% said they’d be more likely to order direct from a restaurant/pub if a loyalty programme was available, and 1/3 stated they’d definitely spend more in order to secure points. 

JP Then, Founder, Slerp: “The hospitality sector is facing massive headwinds but there remains opportunity for operators who are listening to customers and embracing an omni-channel approach. The stats don’t lie - d2c combined with loyalty should be part of the proposition as customers want it and they are telling us so.”

A year ago, consumer demand was significant with 9-in-10 consumers saying they wanted the restaurant and pub brands which they’d had in their homes during lockdowns to continue offering ‘at-home’ solutions after Covid restrictions lift. That demand hasn’t waned, with 89% saying they have ordered direct via a hospitality's own website, app or social channels in the past 12 months. KAM suggests in order to capitalise on this cemented demand, operators must not sit still and need to continue to evolve their online offering.

KAM and Slerp have partnered to create a free e-book for operators highlighting the key findings from the research and opportunities to grow their “order-in” sales.
Download it here.

Pubs will fail in months without urgent Government support for crushing energy costs

The British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) has today revealed the results of a flash survey of members on the devastating impact of the rise in energy bills.

With only 1 in 4 members currently in a fixed price contract secured before the recent price rises, the majority are facing huge uncertainty as they try to secure long term contracts for their energy needs.

90% of respondents who have been quoted for new contracts are seeing their prices at least double from the price they are paying now, and nearly 2 in 3 of those are seeing price rises of over 300%, with 1 in 2 of those being quoted at 400% or more.

In addition to these unsustainable rises, 1 in 3 of those trying to secure a contract have not been able to do so, leaving them having to pay even higher variable rates, with no certainty for their futures.

The impact of these crippling price rises means that 1 in 2 businesses will now be loss making, and a massive 1 in 3 of those businesses will fail in the next 3 months.

Steve Alton, BII CEO said:
“We have been sharing the data from our members with officials and Ministers in Government for many months now, leaving them in no doubt of the impact of increasing pressures of cost of business inflation and specifically the escalating energy crisis. 

“The effect of these unprecedented energy price rises on our nations’ pubs has now reached a critical level. Behind these stark headlines, the reality for individual operators running essential businesses connecting people at the heart of their communities is simply devastating.

“This is not just about business failure and the loss of livelihoods for our members, it is the loss of jobs in local communities, homes for families and the vital lifeline that pubs provide for those facing isolation and loneliness in villages, towns and cities across the UK.

“The demand from consumers to return to our pubs after the central role they played in supporting their communities in the pandemic, has proven how vital it is for us all to reconnect with friends and family. 

“If Government does not act rapidly to support these small businesses that not only do so much for their communities, but also provide vital business to local suppliers and brewers as well as significant tax revenues into the Treasury, they will be lost, in some cases forever. 

“We are calling on Government to provide a meaningful cap for business energy, as well as grant support for our essential, safe spaces for all across the UK. We are also calling for at least a 50% reduction in business rates for 23/24, as well as a significant cut in duty for draught beer and cider of at least 20% on containers of 20l or more, to allow them to begin to recover their businesses.

“These measures alongside a reduced rate of VAT, encouraging consumers to continue to visit pubs during this cost-of-living crisis will be essential to ensure their survival.

“Without support, the alternative is simply unthinkable. The impact on the economy will be enormous, but the long-term damage to our unique heritage and the social fabric of our nation will be devastating.”

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