Searcys and Benugo bag Barbican deals worth £40m

23 March 2015 by
Searcys and Benugo bag Barbican deals worth £40m

WSH companies Searcys and Benugo have both bagged lucrative contracts with the Barbican with a combined value of around £40m.

Searcys, which has operated at the iconic London Arts venue for 25 years, will continue its long run for another five years. Estimated to be worth around £5m a year, the new deal will see Searcys operate two revamped restaurants in the Centre.

Searcys will also continue to provide catering and hospitality services across the Barbican's 19 event spaces, which include the main auditoria, the foyer, a series of meeting rooms and the conservatory.

Meanwhile Benugo makes its debut at the Barbican with a five-year contract to look after the cinema cafes and foyer coffee points valued at approximately £3m annually. It will also take over form incumbent caterer Compass Group, with the relaunch of the Barbican Foodhall.

Dubbed the Barbican Kitchen, the lakeside space will feature a hand-built wood fired oven serving organic pizza and the introduction of a 'kids eat free' offer for families.

The Barbican put the tender out for the restaurants, cafes and event catering business in three separate lots and the reassignment of operations has seen the Centre take the performance bars in-house.

Commenting on the re-appointment, Maddison told The Caterer: "The Barbican is going through some pretty strategic changes itself and becoming more commercial. It laid down a really strong challenge for us.

"Being incumbent gives you a big advantage because you know how everything works, but because we'd been there so long, they were probably looking to signify change."

Ben Warner, founder of Benugo, added: "It's a really good win because obviously we're both under the WSH brand. The Barbican is an organisation we have long admired and whose values and approach to their cultural programme closely resonates with our approach to food."

The timeline for the undisclosed investment in the venues has yet to be determined around a busy schedule of events for the Barbican, which includes Oscar nominated actor Benedict Cumberbatch taking residence in an already-sold out run of Hamlet that will begin in August.

New Searcys restaurant Tonic & Remedy to open in London >>

Westbury Street Holdings buys Searcys >>

Benugo opens Stephen St Kitchen at BFI >>

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