Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Marston's defends new tenants' deal

Mr Darby.

Marston's may bask in the glow of imagined admiration but debate or detail on your revolutionary deal is hardly of value. You said all that needs to be said and no further analysis is needed to expand on that. You said £5K extra to the tenant. £5K? Five grand? Five grand extra? This is a derisory amount in the true conext of what your - and many other pubco tenants - are handling day to day over the course of their lease.

The only thing you could be congratulated on is that your company has managed to stay below the parapet while the big boys take the flak and while doing so have been formulating some mutton dressed up as lamb to make Marston's shine alongside the ossified offerings of the other pubcos caught in the threatening headlights of Competition Commission and mediation.

The problem you, and your other pubco colleagues have is that you just do not get it Mr Darby, you just don't get it.

Your company's general identikit offering and distance from the coal face of the industry is as poor as the other pubcos'. Private Equity pub companies like Punch and Enterprise have ruined the pub industry and companies like yours, which at least have a genuine brewing side to their operation, simply fell in love and in line with the business practices of the non brewers - because they were making SO MUCH MONEY for doing NOTHING.

The screws of the new 20 year old status quo have turned too much and there's nothing left ot extract from lessees who've been on the rack for too long. £5K is a joke. All that can be said for it is that it's better than nothing. Like warm gruel is better to a slave than stale crusts and brackish water.

Pubcos got away with fleecing people for so long without any comeback they all comprehensively lost the plot and now are scratching around trying to find creative ways out of the predicament they collectively got themselves into.

Rethink your business model. Get with the 21st century.

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