Coffee chain Harris + Hoole insists there is enough differentiation between itself and parent company Caffe Nero to be able to exist within the same high street locations.
There were concerns over whether the two food-to-go operators would be able to share the same territories following Caffe Nero’s acquisition of Harris + Hoole last year.
Josh Brown, head of commercial development at the 37-strong chain Harris + Hoole, which was formerly owned by Tesco, said there are occasions when the brands share the same high streets, but he claims they are not necessarily fighting for the same business.
Speaking at Lunch! 2017, he said: “We actually have a Caffe Nero and a Harris + Hoole three doors down from each other. They’re operating successfully and in line with each other, with no crossover of teams and no crossover of customer focus.”
Harris + Hoole, which is a predominantly London-based chain and has just opened its first store in 18 months, is able to sit side-by-side with Caffe Nero due to its differentiated market appeal and ability to learn from its parent company, according to Brown.
He added: “We have a lot of difference, and that is one of the key things about the two businesses that we would both highlight as a strength. Not only can we learn a lot from each, and we have learnt an awful lot from Caffe Nero just in the time we’ve been with them, but actually how can two coffee shops that are part of the same ownership sits together.”
Having been able to sit alongside the coffee giant, Harris + Hoole is eying a central London store, which is set to open in three weeks.
When Harris + Hoole was part of Tesco the brand had ambitions to reach 100 stores, says Brown.
However, following a change in the supermarket’s strategy, which eventually led to Tesco selling the chain, the expansion never materialised.