Employees fearful as Heston Blumenthal's restaurant business reports £2m post-tax loss

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 15th July 2019

Heston Blumenthal's staff have expressed concern that they may see the same fate as Jamie Oliver's employees as it emerged that the company's losses neared £2 million last year.

Compared with 2017, when the company recorded £700,000 in losses, the group reported post-tax losses of £1.7m in the financial year ending on May 31st 2018, while turnover in the period fell from £12.8m to £12.4m and gross profit fell from £8.8m to £8.7m. 

Meanwhile, Dinner by Heston in Melbourne is said to have made a £300,000 loss last year. 

However the company claims that the losses are down to its running through an efficiency programme.

Holding company SL6 told City A.M. that it was "of the opinion that the loss for the year is a consequence of the current period of transition of the group’s business," and that it expected much better results for the  financial year. 

Fears that the group may crash, leaving its staff jobless as happened to more than 1,000 Jamie Oliver employees earlier this year, are understandable at a time of uncertainty for the UK's hospitality industry. 

The number of restaurants having filed for insolvency almost doubled in the past eight years, which many have associated with the economic uncertainty caused by Brexit, rising food prices and national living wage increases - something the SL6 said they were "aware" of, and despite which it made bright prognostics for the restaurant group. 

Earlier this year, Heston Blumenthal  was caught up in controversy as it emerged that his international restaurant group, Cape Proprietary Inc, uses several Caribbean and European tax havens to minimise corporation tax bills.

At the time, it was said that the company may have turned to such measures to make up for lost profits, but it remains a matter of contention.

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 15th July 2019

Employees fearful as Heston Blumenthal's restaurant business reports £2m post-tax loss