READING, England, Aug. 8, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The 100 Leading U.K. restaurant chains registered a 5.6 percent annual turnover increase in 2011, a sharp improvement over 2.6 percent the prior year. According to data released today by Technomic Inc. in its annual reporting on the top U.K. restaurant chains the foodservice consultancy found that U.K. units grew 4.9 percent to 17,593 in 2011, compared to unit growth of 3.9 percent the previous year.
"It is certainly encouraging to see overall industry growth rates more than double in one year," said Darren Tristano, Managing Director of Technomic. "On a chain-by-chain basis, however, performance varied substantially, reflecting the fact that many organisations are still redefining their value propositions for today's economy and tackling various industry challenges."
Among limited-service restaurants, the largest menu categories in turnover came from burger (£2.3 billion), coffee shops (£1.5 billion) and chicken (£1.1 billion). The ranking was led, as usual, by U.S.-based McDonald's, which generated just below £1.9 billion in turnover in 2011, followed by Wetherspoon (£1 billion) and Greggs (£707.6 million).
As a whole, limited-service restaurants saw a turnover bump of 4.4 percent. The bakery subsegment experienced the fastest rate of turnover and unit growth, with an increase in turnover of 14.2 percent from 2010 and a unit growth rate of 11.6 percent. Though only two bakery chains are listed in the Leading 100 U.K. chains, both Paul and Le Pain Quotidien experienced significant turnover increases of 17 and 11.3 percent respectively.
Full-service restaurants experienced an optimistic growth year in 2011 with an increase of 7.1 percent in turnover. Pub chains and casual-dining restaurants showed an increase in this segment with a 7.3 and 6.8 percent rise in sales respectively.
Wetherspoon, a traditional pub chain, is the second largest chain in turnover for 2011 behind McDonald's. As the U.K.'s largest pub chain, Wetherspoon reported a 9.7 percent rise in turnover to approximately £1 billion, as well as an 8.5 percent rise in unit count to 841. Following Wetherspoon, casual-dining PizzaExpress reported the next highest turnover in the full-service segment at £367.5 million in 2011.
The fastest growing chains in the full-service segment include Busaba Eathai (80.7 percent), Jamie's Italian (77.3 percent) and Côte Restaurants (37.8 percent). Busaba Eathai, interestingly, was new to the 2012 Leading 100 U.K. chains ranking.
The Top Ten U.K. Chain Restaurants
Ranked by turnover in 2011 vs. 2010
2011 U.K. Turnover(£MM)
% Turnover Change
% Unit Change
In total, the top 10 restaurant chains accounted for almost £7.3 billion, over half (52.3 percent) of total turnover for the Top 100 U.K. Chains.
The 2012 Technomic Leading 100 U.K. Chain Restaurant Report details the Top 100 U.K. chains with in-depth restaurant profiles, segment breakdown, and emerging trends. Technomic focuses solely upon the commercial restaurant industry, excluding other types of foodservice operations. Technomic estimated 2011 and 2010 U.K. turnover and unit data for many of the chains using years of foodservice industry knowledge and expertise. Public financial records were used where available. All data are adjusted to reflect results on a calendar year basis.
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