Education caterer Chartwells has kicked Avenance into touch on a lucrative contract at Rugby School, Warwickshire, Caterer has learned.
Compass Group's Chartwells is understood to have converted the prestigious contract - estimated to be worth £1.5m in annual turnover - from rival caterer Avenance, part of Elior UK.
Chartwells is expected to take over the catering at the independent school from September after the incumbent caterer's 2008 contract extension comes to an end. Avenance had held the Rugby School contract for ten years.
Each of the 16 house kitchen and catering facilities for the school's 1,100 students, the majority of whom are boarding pupils, will be managed by Chartwells.
The contract loss at Elior comes after Compass's business and industry arm Restaurant Associates won a £3m contract at investment firm Aon that had previously been split between the two caterers, while in February it was announced that independent caterer BaxterStorey had snatched a £10m catering and facilities management deal from the French firm.
However Nigel Parson, a leisure equity analyst at Evolution Securities, said the contract moves were part of the peaks and troughs of the industry.
"All operators probably lose 20%-3-% of their renewal contracts each year because clients either look for a better price or they're bored with what they've got," he added.
A spokesman for Elior said: "We have enjoyed a good working relationship with the school since 2000 and are currently finalising the smooth handover of the contract."
Compass declined to comment.
By Janie Stamford
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