Pub firm gets into the online Spirit

PUBCO Spirit claims a new online reservations system has helped it increase bookings and grow its customer database.

The firm, which demerged from Punch Taverns last August and has 800 managed outlets across the UK, introduced the Live Res system across its 130 Chef & Brewer-branded pubs in January.
Online bookings are now said to account for a major portion of advance table bookings in its Chef & Brewer pubs; the system has also allowed it to flag up occasions like Valentine’s and Mother’s Days to its customers.
Kenny Skelton, head of digital at Spirit, said the pubco now aims to roll out the system to some of its other pub brands, including Fayre & Square and Taylor Walker.
“Previously, we didn’t offer our guests an online booking facility, which meant they could only book by calling the restaurant directly,” he said.
“Increasingly, consumers expect to be able to make restaurant bookings online, and the Live Res system has enabled us to offer that option.
“Giving our guests the flexibility to book in the way that suits them best is important in helping us keep our edge over the competition.”
Julie Featherstone, director of sales at Live Res, said the system offers pub and restaurant operators an “efficient and cost-effective” way to manage online bookings.
“More restaurants and dining outlets than ever use incentives to bring guests through their doors, and our advanced solution offers a targeted alternative to ‘spray and pray’ voucher campaigns,” she said.
“With Live Res, operators can fine-tune promotions to off-peak periods, operators can increase the productivity of their restaurant, and therefore their profits.”