Re-Emergence of Restaurants and Bars

Wednesday 24 March 2021

Written by Roy Butcher

Re-Emergence of Restaurants and Bars

Re-Emergence of Restaurants and Bars 

It’s not breaking news that our high streets are in trouble. With major players already closed, and others not looking like they will reopen anytime sooncombined with an online delivery explosion, it is consequently changing the way we shop.  

I imagine with the end of the pandemic insight, there will be affordable shop letting opportunities.  With the predicted BOOM of people desperate to go out and socialise again, I wonder whether pubs, bars, and restaurants will have a role to play in helping to reinvigorate the high street and to take advantage of these closed units?  

There will definitely be opportunities out there for some operators, particularly individuals with cash or those able to leverage and negotiate advantageous terms, including great rental deals.   

Apart from having that all-important cash on the hip, what are the other main considerations when opening a bar or restaurant? 

Making a success of your restaurant, like any business, requires you to be highly motivated and patient. Ideally, it makes sense to have experience in this sector already, so you know how to source food suppliers, run a kitchen and deal with clientele. Keep in mind, that you should expect to put in a lot of time and effort, long evenings, and weekends! 

You also want the concept for your restaurant nailed on. It is likely that you will have a specific feel and experience in mind, which you can then build that all-important menu around.  

Carrying out proper market research to identify your targeted audience and establish what you need to do to cater to their needs is absolutely essential. It is no good serving up amazing food that no-one will buy. Think about what your ideal customer looks like, then research where they live, where they work, how much they would be willing to pay, and what food they already enjoy. You might consider hosting focus groups with your target demographic to get their opinions on menus, look and feel or locations. 

Speaking of locations, your restaurant’s location is going to play a massive part in its success. In fact, this may be the area that makes or breaks your business.  

There should be good footfall - research is key here. Check out the surrounding area and its population, even the kind of businesses that have operated from the premises before.   

Setting up your restaurant is where you can have fun with your concept. You should think about the branding and how that extends to distinct aspects of your restaurant, from your menu to the decor.  

Then it's time to start building a detailed business plan. This should enable you to answer a lot of questions before you get started – and help you secure any necessary funding identified.  

Important things to include in your business plan:  

  • your idea   
  • the research, including audience research and competitor analysis.  
  • funding requirements  
  • menus and costings  
  • marketing plans.  
  • overhead review and budgeting  
  • financial and cash flow forecasts  

Your business plan should address your restaurant’s cash flow, taking its break-even point into account. Most restaurants do not make a profit in the first year, so be prepared for that too!   

Raffingers specialise in the Leisure & Entertainment sectors, and are able to help you with everything from writing your business plan and securing that much-needed funding, to writing a marketing plan and preparing cash flow forecasts. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch or contact me directly at

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