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News > Business

Cote tops UK profit growth list

By Luke Nicholls , 27-Apr-2012
Last updated on 27-Apr-2012 at 18:02 GMT

French bistro chain Cote has been revealed as the company with the fastest-growing profits within the UK's restaurant, pub and quick service market.

The 31-strong Group, which is part of Richard Caring’s portfolio, topped the Zolfo Cooper Profit Tracker – an annual list of the 50 most profitable eating and drinking out companies in the UK, released today in association with our sister publication M&C Report.

“It is really nice to be recognised by through this unique new benchmark,” said Alex Scrimgeour, Cote’s joint managing director. “Our approach has been very much to keep our heads down, ensuring that our restaurants are delivering the right Cote customer experience specifically in terms of great food quality, attentive service, a warm environment and of course great value for money.”

Formed in 2007 by the management team that sold Strada to Tragus , Cote took pole position after delivering profit growth over a three-year period of 225.3 per cent. As the profits would suggest, the Group has grown quickly, opening its 30th site in Esher, Surrey, at the start of this year.

Wasabi - the London-based sushi and bento chain - was second in the inaugural list, delivering profit growth of 79.8 per cent. That was followed by Nando’s - the fast-casual chicken restaurant chain - which reported growth of 75.3 per cent. Other high-performing businesses on the list include Pret A Manger, YO! Sushi, Wagamama and Pizza Express owner Gondola.

Future winners

Paul Hemming, partner at Zolfo Cooper, said: “Picking future winners in business is fraught with difficulty, especially in the leisure sector.  Far more straightforward is the business of identifying the stars of today – the sector’s leading companies in terms of delivering stand-out profit growth.

Mark Wingett, editor of M&C Report, added: “What is clear from the first unique benchmarking scheme is that, despite the challenging trading conditions experienced over the last three years, strong brands with a high quality offer and skilled management teams have continued to grow their profits and estates.

“It also highlights that both established and fledglings groups have been able to prosper during the downturn. While there is a slight London-bias, the appearance of groups such as Amber Taverns, Loungers and Market Town Taverns shows that quality operators continue to buck the regional downward trend. Chains like Nando’s and Pret A Manger show that impressive profit growth is still possible even with estates closing in on the 300 mark.”

The full list:

  1. Cote Restaurants - 225.3%
  2. Wasabi - 79.8%
  3. Nando’s - 75.3%
  4. Amber Taverns - 68.9%
  5. Loungers - 67.4%
  6. Market Town Taverns - 48.9%
  7. Glendola Leisure - 48.0%
  8. Yo! Sushi - 47.5%
  9. Wahaca - 45.4%
  10. Peach Pub Company - 41.5%
  11. Pret A Manger - 38.4%
  12. Canteen - 36.4%
  13. TGI Friday’s - 32.7%
  14. Blanc Brasseries - 31.7%
  15. Eclectic Bars - 29.4%
  16. Giraffe - 27.5%
  17. Soho House - 27.4%
  18. ETM Group - 27.0%
  19. B@1 - 26.3%
  20. Patisserie Valerie - 25.8%
  21.  Kornicis - 25.6%
  22. Crussh - 21.4%
  23. Moto - 21.1%
  24. Tokyo Group - 20.9%
  25. Corney & Barrow - 20.3%
  26. Adnams - 18.8%
  27. Living Ventures - 18.0%
  28. KFC UK - 17.9%
  29. Las Iguanas - 16.9%
  30. Wagamama - 14.1%
  31. Inventive Leisure - 14.0%
  32. Krispy Kreme - 13.9%
  33. JW Lees - 13.6%
  34. Hydes - 13.0%
  35. Frederic Robinson - 11.6%
  36. Rex Restaurants - 11.4%
  37. Town & City - 11.0%
  38. St Austell Brewery - 10.1%
  39. Shepherd Neame - 8.9%
  40. Castle Rock - 8.7%
  41. Gaucho Grill - 8.4%
  42. Caffè Nero - 8.1%
  43. Timothy Taylor - 7.7%
  44. Ignite Group - 6.9%
  45. Butcombe Brewery - 6.5%
  46. G1 Group - 6.1%
  47. Caprice Holdings - 4.9%
  48. Charles Wells 233 - 4.3%
  49. Gondola Group - 4.1%
  50. Eat - 1.8%

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