Monday, February 27, 2012

Our Stagnant Restaurant Industry

February 27, 2012
U.S. Independent Restaurants Account for 87 Percent of Industry Traffic Losses Since 2008

“Independent restaurant operators have neither the money nor resources that the chains have,” says Bonnie Riggs, NPD restaurant industry analyst. “They lacked the marketing power to drive traffic and the monetary buffer to get through the difficult times during the past several years.”

I offer some growth math.

1. Independent restaurants represented 27% of the industry's visits in 2011.
2. Independent restaurant traffic was down 4%.
3. Chain restaurants therefore represented 73% of the industry's visits in 2011.
4. Chain restaurant traffic was up 1%.

(27% x -4%) + (73% x +1%) = 0%

There was no overall restaurant traffic growth in 2011. The meager traffic growth in chain restaurants during this supposed recovery was simply taken from the independent restaurants.

Total restaurant industry traffic for the year ending November 2011 was flat compared to a year ago, according to NPD’s CREST.

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