Covid-19 has pushed the majority of UK hospitality businesses to the brink of closure, according to new research shared exclusively with City A.M. today.
More than three fifths (63 per cent) have experienced a decline in demand for their goods or services since the beginning of the pandemic, while 67 per cent have seen their income shrink notably, Peckwater Brands found.
The majority (58 per cent) of hospitality decision-makers say Covid-19 has pushed their businesses to the brink of closure.
Over a third (36 per cent) do not believe their business will exist by the end of 2022, with 43 per cent fearing closure by the end of 2027.
The virtual brand specialist surveyed 250 senior decision-makers within UK restaurants, bars, cafés and takeaways. It found that 64% of hospitality business leaders had seen their mental wellbeing significantly impacted by the stresses of Covid-19.
The research also found that 74 per cent of hospitality business leaders had analysed their existing operations to find areas of improvement to increase their chances of survival.
Three quarters (75 per cent) said they have relied on takeaway services to stay afloat during the pandemic, while 69% have sourced new, cheaper suppliers to improve profit margins.
“While the pandemic has impacted all industries, few have had to overcome harder or more numerous blows than the hospitality sector,” said Sam Martin, COO of Peckwater Brands.
“Multiple lockdowns, social distancing rules, health and safety improvements, and uncertainty surrounding new Covid variants – it is understandable that confidence among restaurants and takeaways is so low.”Sam Martin, COO of Peckwater Brands.
“Positively, however, our research suggests managers have accepted that they must adapt to survive,” Martin continued.
“From finding cheaper suppliers to embracing takeaway services, it’s encouraging to see hospitality businesses thinking creatively about how they can increase their income throughout such a challenging time,” he added.
“Many challenges lie ahead. Restrictions might be easing again, but there remains the prevalent threat of a fresh variant setting back the sector’s much-needed recovery.”
“Yet if businesses are willing to be flexible and creative with their approach to operations,” Martin concluded.