Brakes Professional Food Market to close

Foodservice specialist Brakes is pulling the plug on its cash and carry concept less than a year after the pilot outlet opened in Croydon, South London.

The 25,000sq ft Brakes Professional Food Market trial outlet opened in March 2014 offering a cash and carry concept tailored to the needs of caterers. It boasted its own in-depot butcher, fish monger and development kitchen and claimed to offer savings of around 10% compared to the delivered service.

However, in a statement last week, the group said its core business has grown ahead of expectations, meaning the focus had moved away from providing an in-depot service.

“We have also delivered a number of initiatives, including the roll-out of e-commerce to our independent customers, with 24% now registered to shop on-line and the launch of a multi-temperature service to our customers.  In addition, we have also announced a joint venture with Fresh Direct to accelerate sales growth in the fresh category, which is the fastest growing part of the foodservice market,” said a group spokesman.

“In view of these initiatives and the attractive opportunities they present, we have decided not to open any further Brakes Professional Food Market stores. As a result of this decision, we have, today, begun a consultation process with our colleagues to close the Croydon trial store. We are very grateful for the support of our customers in Croydon and will continue to offer them the highest level of customer service throughout the consultation period,” they added.

Brakes has promised to go through a “thorough consultation” with the 50 Professional Food Market staff.

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