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Buzzworks celebrates another year of growth

It has been another successful year for Scottish hospitality group, Buzzworks Holdings as they report an increase in turnover, up 9% from £14.8m to £16.2m, for 2018.

The award-winning family business continues to be one of Scotland’s fastest growing independent restaurant and bar operators, managing 11 prestigious venues across Ayrshire and into the east of Scotland.

Pre-tax profits for the company continued to be positive with the company investing an impressive £1.8m during this financial year on new venues, its existing portfolio and staff development.

Taking the dynamic group’s unique blend of food, drink, style and service to the East Coast for the first time, Buzzworks secured its second venue outside Ayrshire – Scotts Port Edgar Marina – and began work on its 220-cover restaurant and bar situated against the stunning backdrop of the Three Bridges and Firth of Forth.

In Bridge of Weir, the business transformed the former Archies lounge bar and kitchen to open its fifth House branded restaurant and bar The Coach House. The £1m development saw Buzzworks create 40 extra jobs for the town and launch its own take on the traditional bar and restaurant – synonymous with the high specification of both Buzzworks and its House collection of venues.

Closer to home, Buzzworks invested a further £400,000 in refurbishment works on their flagship House venue The Tree House in Ayr, alongside the purchase and renovation of the property next door, transforming it into a new venue – the T bar – providing a modern take on a traditional public house for locals and visitors alike.

With its new venue opening and an extension to its portfolio, the annual results also identified a six per cent increase in employee numbers (rising from 438 in 2017 to 466 in 2018).

Employee training and wellbeing continues to be a core principle for Buzzworks and the company continued to invest heavily in its people through industry-leading training and development programmes as well as introducing a new work life balance initiative.

Kenny Blair, Managing Director (pictured left with Colin and Alison Blair), said, “2018 has seen the business grow further, as we opened our first venue outside of Ayrshire in Bridge of Weir. Now with two sites in the East and further negotiations on sites 13, 14 and 15, we are forging on with our planned growth strategy for the future and the focus is on making 2019 even more successful.

“Even with industry wide challenges including rising supplier costs, alongside the uncertainty of Brexit, we have continued to not only increase our turnover, but invest heavily in both the portfolio and our people.

“Our staff are what define us and are integral in creating the foundations of a long term, successful hospitality business. So much so, we have spent more than £100k in the last year alone to introduce industry leading work life balance initiatives for our people, including decreasing the working week without decreasing pay and paying overtime for every hour worked or time in lieu. We have also increased our training initiatives to encourage personal growth and development for everyone within the company.

“Providing a positive working environment for all staff, along with the knowledge and tools to deliver an exceptional experience to our customers, is key to not only building Buzzworks up year on year, it ensures we attract and retain the best talent within the industry.”

For the third year running, Buzzworks was identified in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work for in the UK list.

Buzzworks Holdings – which currently manages 11 prestigious venues including Elliots, Scotts in Troon, Largs and South Queensferry, Lido venues in Prestwick and Troon, The Tree House in Ayr, The Long House in Kilmarnock, The Mill House in Stewarton, The Corner House in Kilwinning and The Coach House in Bridge of Weir.