The boss of Brewdog has warned that rail strikes are “killing UK businesses” as he offered up the pub chain’s Waterloo venue as a location for “beer and sandwiches” negotiations.
James Watt took to LinkedIn to warn that Brewdog has lost £3.5m to date due to industrial action, as he accused the government of not being capable of resolving the dispute.
Rail workers have been striking on and off for over a year in a dispute with the train companies, causing mass disruption to passengers and commuters.
Watt urged ministers to “step in and sort this mess out”.
Watt said the “grim reality” of strikes went far beyond passengers and warned sales were down 50 per cent on average on picket days, leading to £600,000 in lost staff wages, £1m in lost Treasury VAT, National Insurance and beer duty revenue.
“The strikes are threatening the viability and future of thousands of businesses and hundreds of thousands of jobs all over the UK,” Watt wrote on the professional networking website.
“As an economy, the UK is already massively struggling compared to all other G7 countries due to the extreme incompetence of our leadership. Letting the trains strikes continue just further underlines that incompetence and further handicaps our already crippled economy,” he said.
But he stressed that after “the last few years, I don’t believe this current government is capable of doing anything productive for the UK people or our struggling businesses.
“In the old days, unions and government used to get round the negotiating table over ‘beer and sandwiches at No10’. We are happy to offer Brewdog Waterloo as a location for a beer and sandwich negotiation.”
The Department for Transport (DfT) has been contacted for comment.