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Wetherspoon Pub Chief Attacks Jamie Oliver Over Claims His Italian Restaurants Push High Street Rents Up Forcing Pubs Out Of Business

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2695575/Wetherspoons-chief-attacks-Jamie-Oliver-claims-Italian-restaurants-push-high-street-rents-forcing-pubs-business.html

The boss of the countrywide pub chain JD Wetherspoon has said Jamie Oliver's Italian restaurants are pushing street rents up and forcing pubs out of business.

Tim Martin, chairman of pub chain, says the willingness of Jamie’s Italian, the restaurant group founded by the high-profile celebrity chef, to accept high rent costs is causing rents for other
operators to be pushed up.

..

'The only one you have to be careful of around the country is Jamie Oliver, because in general he seems to agree to higher rents in several locations that are pushing up the rents for other people.

'My advice for Oliver is: Be careful, son. You’re an excellent cook, but do you know about rent reviews or understand the property market?'

I wonder how many of Jamie Olivers restaurants will remain open in the long term?

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Of course Wetherspoon's pubs being able to undercut the prices of traditional pubs has never been responsible for putting a pub out of business...

Oddly enough I can think of a couple of pubs that struggled to compete when a Wetherspoons opened, eventually closing down.

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Jamie Oliver's restaurant in Winchester (Union JacK) closed down - he couldn't make it work. I expect due to the high rents and perhaps he did negotiate a poor deal with the landlord as Tim suggests. Winchester retail rent levels are very high and of course as a consequence every thing is expensive. Someone suggested to me recently that you dont see many young people in Winchester - only those that still live with their parents.

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I'd be surprised if Jamie Oliver was personally responsible for negotiating the rent paid by individual restaurants within his chain.

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This has been a big feature of the commercial property market. The previous guilty parties were private equity funny money backed retail chains with a rapid expansion programme.

Once was bidding for a unit that was previously let at £90k pa + service charge. Got into a bidding war with a private equity backed chain and it had been going back and forth through agents at £5k or £10k increments and was at £150k. Then suddenly their agent just offered £200k pa and said his client wanted to acquire the premises and had just 'lost patience' with the process. That's lost patience to the tune of half a million over the lease term.

Unsurprisingly, they went bust but everyone else nearby will still be paying for it in massively increased rents that 5 years into a lease, with no way out, they have no option but to try and pay.

Also, it is surprising the disproportionate effect one player paying top money can have on the whole market.

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If people are overpaying from their own money, who are we to stop them?

Different story if they're getting subsidies or bailouts. The major culprit now is the unholy alliance between landlords and charity shops, to keep rents high with the aid of tax breaks not available to honest traders. For example, I will never again contribute to St Lukes Hospice nor any events in support of them, after this instance of killing off a local high street.

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Oh dear, what a pity, never mind:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-43104488

"

Court documents revealed that Jamie's Italian had debts of £71.5m.

These included:

£2.2m in wages owed to staff

£30.2m of overdrafts and loans

£41.3m owed to landlords, HM Revenue and Customs, suppliers and other creditors

However, £47m of the debts are covered by loans from HSBC Bank and Jamie Oliver's other companies."

So, it's OK. £47m of the debt is covered by....more debt!

Me thinks the wealth illusion isn't limited to the bottom section of society.

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Ahh yes, the unholy trinity of PE, tax credits and EE migrants.

Id swear that some of the new oldshopnoweatery places are staffed solely by EEers.

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Perhaps a good viable rent was negotiated at the outset......they only closed when the landlord decided to up it on renewal.......the business eats, shoots and leaves.....good for them.;)

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Just because a person can cook, doesn't mean they can run a business.....others run it for them and the lenders lend to a brand name......eat there another name is doing the cooking.;)

 

It is not the first time TV exposed chefs open restaurants that close.

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12 minutes ago, winkie said:

Just because a person can cook, doesn't mean they can run a business.....others run it for them and the lenders lend to a brand name......eat there another name is doing the cooking.;)

 

It is not the first time TV exposed chefs open restaurants that close.

Normally being able to cook is a good sign of not being able to run a business....

Chefs need to have an eye on profit, followed by food.

Theres a few who do it but most end up relying on Saturday kitchen type stuff.

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I don't understand restaurantes full stop never mind not understanding their commercial property deals. 

It's a kind of paradox; when I eat in a restaurant I am no longer surprised at the cost. It's not difficult to guess at the cost of ingredients of something familiar like say quiche and chips, or plain pizza. The much larger menu price obviously includes rent, heating, wages, and so on but in general you would think a menu price which was a multiple of 5x or 6x should cover everything and make a profit. Even more so with drinks especially soft drinks. 

The reality seems much different and restaurantes are struggling. I got an email from Zizzi today containing a 40% off voucher which I suppose indicates they need to attract business. 

So when you pay 40 quid for a simple meal for 2 where does the money go? 

Especially when they add a separate charge for "service". 

Edited by Funn3r
Forgot to say wages not actually covered

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My mum sister was shopping one day near one. Looked at the price of food and walked out.

I know it Jamie Oliver fish and chips but it's still fish and chips

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9 minutes ago, Funn3r said:

I don't understand restaurantes full stop never mind not understanding their commercial property deals. 

It's a kind of paradox; when I eat in a restaurant I am no longer surprised at the cost. It's not difficult to guess at the cost of ingredients of something familiar like say quiche and chips, or plain pizza. The much larger menu price obviously includes rent, heating, wages, and so on but in general you would think a menu price which was a multiple of 5x or 6x should cover everything and make a profit. Even more so with drinks especially soft drinks. 

The reality seems much different and restaurantes are struggling. I got an email from Zizzi today containing a 40% off voucher which I suppose indicates they need to attract business. 

So when you pay 40 quid for a simple meal for 2 where does the money go? 

Especially when they add a separate charge for "service". 

Restaurants costs are mostly fixed (wages, rent, heating, council tax etc), so the economics are totally dependent on getting the max number of bums on seats during the opening hours.

Personally I have always regarded Italian food as cheap to prepare, easy to serve, nothing special in today's high street. A quick meal before going to a concert or show. I certainly would not expect to pay high end prices for it. I can only presume Jamie Oliver thought he he could make a buck by lending his name and charging high prices. I never even thought of going to his restaurant in my local town, but I have gone to The Ivy which has replaced it, and appears to offer something a bit more special.

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14 minutes ago, nnails said:

My mum sister was shopping one day near one. Looked at the price of food and walked out.

I know it Jamie Oliver fish and chips but it's still fish and chips

Did it have a special stack of chips formed into a pyramid ?

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There’s so many options. If one is in an unfamiliar town you could try Tripadvisor but it’s garbage so just rock up in to the Prezzo/pizza express/ask/Jamie’s Italian to get an average meal and service. To be fair I’ve never had a decent meal at Pizza Express - £40 for 2x pizzas!  Or one could go to Weatherspoons or a chain pub. 

I’m not sure if the £75mn debt for 37 restaurants is reasonable as don’t know their turnover. I can only think their costs (labour and food costs) rocketed and also had to cut prices to get customers in so margins imploded.

 

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10 minutes ago, Ash4781 said:

There’s so many options. If one is in an unfamiliar town you could try Tripadvisor but it’s garbage so just rock up in to the Prezzo/pizza express/ask/Jamie’s Italian to get an average meal and service. To be fair I’ve never had a decent meal at Pizza Express - £40 for 2x pizzas!  Or one could go to Weatherspoons or a chain pub. 

I’m not sure if the £75mn debt for 37 restaurants is reasonable as don’t know their turnover. I can only think their costs (labour and food costs) rocketed and also had to cut prices to get customers in so margins imploded.

 

No one pays the ticket price in Pizza Express! They saw you coming...

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Does Jamie Oliver run the business, or just lend his name?  Been to a Jamie's Italian once before.  Ok, but nothing special.

Edited by reddog

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Walked in to one once, sat down, looked at the prices and we decided to leave. It’s prwtty big standard Italian food at a 50% mark up just for his name but he’s not actually cooking it and frankly I think the guy is a turd so I’m not sure why I went in in the first place.

Ask is the same food only cheaper, and even that’s not cheap (but I quite like it).

I’m missing why you’d go there if I’m honest, doesn’t offer anything more than elsewhere but costs more.

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54 minutes ago, Castlevania said:

No one pays the ticket price in Pizza Express! They saw you coming...

I haven't been to Pizza Express for more than a year. They used to have decent vouchers available virtually all the time however they seem to be trying to wean themselves off of the 'discount voucher merry go round' and they are losing custom because of it. 

At the moment 'Ask' seem to be the new Pizza Express. Frequently offering 40% off the full bill. Unfortunately for them the new customers they are picking up will jump ship to the next chain offering deep discounts as soon as they try and Jack the prices back up. 

'Earlier this month, S&P Global Ratings downgraded the credit rating on Pizza Express because of what it described as the “sharp 460 basis point fall in profitability” in its first half. The ratings agency said this posed “a risk that the group’s UK reported Ebitda margin could decline by as much as 350bps in 2017”. Even S&P noted the company had been focusing on “extensive promotional offers” and while it saw no near-term refinancing risk, it would lower the credit rating again if like-for-like sales growth turned negative.' http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/09/26/restaurant-discounting-rise-owners-feel-bite-rising-costs/

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1 hour ago, Castlevania said:

No one pays the ticket price in Pizza Express! They saw you coming...

Yeah others did have voucher codes!

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Jamie Oliver's steak restaurant goes bust owing millions to HMRC, employs and suppliers.

 

Naturally blames Brexit.  Fookin Ar$hole.

 

He buys back one of the restaurants as a "pre pack", naturally absolving his responsibility to HMRC, employs and suppliers.

 

Why is this Arschloch given multiple TV series lecturing us on how virtuous he is, and how we should all follow his example?

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