Heineken has unveiled plans to invest a further £2 million in its Star Pubs & Bars estate in Scotland this year – with a focus on driving up food sales.
The investment programme is expected to include 15 major refurbishments. Heineken said the initiative should also create approximately 144 jobs in pubs in Scotland.
The firm said the main focus of the investment will be on improving the overall design of its pubs and increasing covers to attract customers and drive food sales.
Refurbishments are expected to include the installation of new kitchens and more flexible areas within pubs that can be used for private dining and functions as well as providing extra covers during peak trading hours.
Star Pubs & Bars venue The Torphicen in Mid Calder is currently undergoing a £475,000 refurbishment, which represents a joint investment by the pubco and the new lessee – multiple operator PG Taverns.
The pub, which has been closed since September, is scheduled to re-open in April as Fork & Field following a revamp, which is expected to increase food cover capacity at the venue from 48 to 94.
Heineken said its ongoing investment programme, which has seen the brewer invest £5m in its Scottish Star Pubs & Bars estate over the last three years, will help the firm reach its target of generating 50% of Star Pubs’ sales from food by 2020.
The company is also investing £75,000 in 2016 to expand its chef consultancy support for Star Pubs & Bars licensees.
Lawson Mountstevens, managing director of Star Pubs & Bars, said the pub company is “working in partnership with our licensees to improve their pubs for the consumers they serve and help them grow their sales”.
“Great community pubs need to adapt to changing consumer needs and we’re investing to ensure Star licensees can do just that,” said Mountstevens.