Wednesday, January 25, 2012


Article by Gareth Epps. 25.01.2012

Opinion: We need to tackle ‘crony capitalism’ on our watch

Excellent, well informed piece.

Greg Mulholland is right on the nail on what's happening to pubs at the hands of Rackmanesque landlords. And the evidence he's right is all over the British town and landscape; closed, boarded up, failing dilapidated pubs. The main reason the pub industry is in such terrible decline is that it has been in the vice like grip of asset stripping private equity liars and cheats - the tied beer pubcos - who have abused their positions of responsibility by taking all profit from as many pubs as possible and syphoning it into debt repayments, bond and shareholder payments and morally and fiscally unsupportable pay packages for Directors, leaving no trading surplus for pub lessees to reinvest in their businesses. The legacy of these practices is decades of chronic underinvestment in the tied pub sector - by far the majority of pubs - leaving the fabric of the pub sector, its bricks and mortar, woefully run down, serving over priced beer due to the cartel set wholesale supply prices of the tied pubcos which have forced its customer base to shop elsewhere - where they can get better value and amenity - in places from Starbucks to the managed pub chains, in many cases owned by the very same pubcos who use their tied estates as a cash cow feifdom.

BIS simply chose to let thousands of publicans go down the Swanee and cut a bit more slack for the pubcos who are the ones who deserve to go to the wall simply for wilfully killing their own geese.

The tie is abused, outmoded, anachronistic and plain unfit for purpose. It MUST go.

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