LondonNet News Headlines
04/09/02
Pubs Go for Caffeine Hit
- Early opening pits Wetherspoon against coffee-bar chains

WALK more than ten metres down any shopping street in London and the chances are you will pass a whole phalanx of coffee bars.

"Enough, already," business analysts have said as they predict at least one of the big chains such as Starbucks, Coffee Republic or Cafe Nero will be forced out of the market in the near future.

It comes as some surprise, then, to learn that pub chain JD Wetherspoon is to open its doors early in order to compete with coffee bars.

Wetherspoon pubs will now open at 10.00 in the morning and charge 49p for a cup of coffee, about half the price charged by most rivals. Brunch breakfasts will cost UKP3.00.

Tim Martin, Wetherspoon chairman, is bullish about his chain's prospects, pointing out that opening an hour earlier brings only marginal cost increases to his pubs, whereas a straightforward coffee-bar needs to invest hundreds of thousands of pounds to open up each outlet.




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