Global Bar, Pub & Drinking Places Industry
Rising unemployment and falling levels of disposable income due to the economic recession brought about changes in the global bar, pub and drinking places industry as consumers sought to cut back on spending on non-essential goods. Consumers also opted to drink at home, benefiting the beer, wine and liquor store industry, reports IBIS World. As economic recovery results in higher employment and rising levels of disposable income, the global bar, pub and drinking places industry should witness growing demand, with consumers opting to drink outside of the home.
The world bar and pub market encompasses bars, pubs, taverns, nightclubs, lounges and other drinking places that serve alcoholic beverages to the public. Some establishments serve beverages that are consumed on the premises. For nightclubs and discotheques, selling alcoholic beverages is their main source of revenue, with some such establishments also offering consumers food services. These establishments have high product turnaround, but low profit margins. This makes the nightclub industry highly sensitive to economic changes, such as the recent downturn.
Regional Market Share
- The US bar, pub and drinking places industry is expected to record more than 3% growth in 2012 to reach a value of almost $23 billion, reports IBIS World. Though revenue had been declining almost 1% yearly since 2007, the industry saw revenue grow just over 1% in 2010 and almost 4% in 2011. When the economic recession caused the bar and nightclub market to shrink in 2008, it was the first decline in more than ten years.
- In 2010, there were over 55,000 pubs in operation in the UK generating combined revenue in excess of $23 billion, according to research from KeyNote. Around 3,000 pubs closed over the four-year period ending in 2010, and while the industry remains in a state of decline, the rate of closures is predicted to ease in the long term. The UK pub industry has been negatively impacted by the economic recession in recent years. As consumers have declining levels of disposable income, pub outings are less frequent and clients have been opting for cheaper alternatives such as purchasing alcoholic beverages from other sources like supermarkets to drink at home. Pub operators can shift their focus to complimentary services to retain existing clients and attract new customers. Food is one example of how industry players may offset the problems caused by the economic climate. More than a quarter of overall pub revenues are generated through sales of soft drinks, snacks and meals. Because the food industry enjoys higher potential margins than the drinks industry, pubs have been adjusting their strategy to avail of this market potential. The industry is expected to continue declining through 2015 to reach a worth of less than $23 billion. By 2015, it is forecast that there will be just over 54,000 pubs in operation in the UK.
- The UK pubs industry can be divided into three main categories, namely brewer-owned pubs, establishments owned by pub companies and free houses, which are run independently. Chains such as JD Weatherspoon have been able to fare better than free houses by providing consumers with cheap food and drink. Free houses have been more adversely affected by the economic recession, as they do not have the same economies of scale as the larger pub chains working in their favor. In 2005, reforms were introduced that meant pubs needed to adhere to less stringent licensing laws than previously. Later opening hours have meant pubs have been able to generate higher revenues by serving later on the weekend.
The global pub industry is likely to see drinking establishments change, losing some of their traditional aspects. Pubs will seek to protect market share and increase trade by providing for different demographics; rather than attracting just an evening crowd and selling alcoholic beverages, pubs will aim also to serve meals and coffees to a daytime crowd.
Leading Industry Associations