Marston’s, the pub retailer, gains BFA accreditation

Marston’s, the pub retailer, has been accredited as a full member of the BFA for its pioneering retail agreement.

Under the agreement, introduced in 2009 in its tenanted and leased estate, Marston’s is responsible for the retail offer, including the drink brands, food menus and retail standards. The franchisee will earn a percentage of revenue and be responsible for staff costs, while the other costs will fall on Marston’s. The benefits to customers are said to include improved standards and consistent value for money offers.

The group plans to convert 600 of its tenanted pubs to the agreement by the end of 2013. Around 230 have been converted to date with encouraging results.

The average expenditure per conversion is around £50,000 and the minimum target return on the incremental capital expenditure is put at 20 per cent.

Ralph Findlay, Marston’s chief executive, said that the agreement encouraged entrepreneurship among licensees, enabling them to manage successful businesses with the benefit of the company’s support, economies of scale, and retailing experience.

“The number of applicants for the agreement is three times higher than those for a traditional tenancy with 30 per cent of the applicants coming from outside the industry,” he added.