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Living Ventures Group reports strongest ever Christmas period

07 January 2015 by
Living Ventures Group reports strongest ever Christmas period

The Living Ventures Group has reported an 8% increase in like-for-like sales and hailed its operations over the Christmas period as exceptional.

Manchester House, the high end restaurant overseen by head chef Aiden Byrne, saw the most dramatic results, with a 34% like-for-like sales increase the five weeks to 3 January 2015.

All of the group's operations saw improvement, with an 8% improvement for the New World Trading Company, of which there are seven sites; 7% for the Gusto brand (ten restaurants); and 7% for the Blackhouse Grill (eight sites). The single-site Australasia restaurant in Manchester saw an increase of 10%; the Artisan Kitchen + Bar in Spinningfields, Manchester, saw a 6% rise; and the four-strong Alchemist brand rose by 3%.

Tim Bacon, Living Ventures Group chief executive, said: "This is a stellar performance in each and every brand, be it casual dining or fine dining, and geographically across the whole estate. The right offer in the right locations, great people and improved consumer confidence have combined to deliver strong growth and great Christmas and New Year trading."

Bacon also confirmed the company's plans to open 13 new restaurants in the next year, and said he was confident 2015 would also be a good year. The group currently runs 32 sites across seven brands.

Based in and around Manchester, Living Ventures' business approach was in the spotlight in April last year after Manchester House appeared on the BBC Two series Restaurant Wars: The Battle for Manchester alongside Michelin-starred chef Simon Rogan, following each chef as they launched separate top-end restaurants in the city.

The restaurant's popularity surged following the show's broadcast, temporarily crashing its booking website.

Manchester was also highlighted in the 2015 Michelin Guide, which was released in September, as editor Rebecca Burr told The Caterer that she "felt for" the city after it failed to pick up any stars in the year's list.

On a more positive note, chief executive of the Northern Restaurant & Bar show, Thom Hetherington, has this year already highlighted that Northern operators are thriving, and that the region had experienced a surge in commercial and creative vibrancy over the past 12 months.

Northern Restaurant & Bar 2015 show reveals top chef line-up >>

BBC show boosts bookings for Manchester House and Rogan's the French >>

‘I feel for Manchester': Michelin Guide editor reveals thoughts on city's dining scene >>

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