March again saw more reasons for hospitality to be positive about the future, although it does look like the lay of the market landscape has shifted a bit in the last two years.
Jonathan Jones, CGA’s managing director, UK and Ireland, said that these “trading figures show the hard work of Britain’s pubs, bars, and restaurants to build back from two years of disruption is paying off.”
One specific sub-sector slice of the hospitality market that fared substantially worse than others in the pandemic was pizza and burger chains.
Byron, Gourmet Burger Kitchen and Italian chains Strada and Carluccio’s were among the casual dining brands forced to close dozens of sites due to the damage done by persistent lockdowns.
However, Gordon Ramsey (never one to mince his words), saw this period in a positive light, as it helped to clean the slate of “crap” restaurants that make the most of merely being in prime locations with amazing, impossible-to-fail footfall.
But there are also more objective signs of recovery emerging. To some degree, the pandemic has cleared a way for new names to rapidly expand, including Pizza Pilgrims (a brand we’ve worked closely with), Rosa’s Thai, and Shoryu Ramen.
Stefan Chomka, the editor of Restaurant magazine says, “it is not about big brands any more”, as landlords are looking to curate sites with more variety, specifically small brands consisting of fewer than five sites.
“It’s no longer good enough to just open a restaurant and serve people.”
OUR ALGORITHM IS A DANCER.
He’s also a foot tapper, a head bobber and, very occasionally, a gifted air guitarist. He’s a person, called James, and he does the job that most places leave to the robots.
Curated by superhumans.
Blending artificial intelligence, and actual intelligence, James oversees the curation of the playlists that influence the way your customers shop. Because, while the tech, data and science are important, there’s nothing better at picking music for humans, than humans. Especially our humans.
Walk this way, talk this way…
You have to walk the walk if you talk the talk, so here’s Phil Whittle, Retail Director at footwear brand schuh, on how we helped transform their brand’s customer experience:
“Startle went beyond our requests for a good music and signage solution and presented a bespoke, forward-thinking technology strategy. Coupled with their commitment to excellent service, they really stood out amongst other providers and have exceeded our expectations so far.”
Get in touch to start giving your customers those hair-tingling moments.