Heineken, the UK’s third largest pub business, has announced a record investment of £50m to refurbish nearly 150 pubs, creating an estimated 1,200 hospitality jobs.
The company owns Star Pubs & Bars, which leases out the majority of its 2,700 pubs to small businesses and entrepreneurs.
The ambitious investment programme will see everything from kitchens, bars and given a bespoke refurbishment to fit each pub’s individual character.
Every pub will benefit from Smart Dispense – a state of the art, environmentally friendly cellar dispense technology, which saves CO2 and water for every pint of beer and cider served.
David Forde, managing director of Heineken UK, said: “We’ve invested just shy of £200m in the last six years into hundreds of our Star Pubs & Bars businesses – all with bespoke refurbishments that respect the heritage of the buildings, keep the soul of the pub, and give a fresh and welcoming look for its locals.
“Some would have you believe the pub is in danger. We are in the business to keep pubs open and thriving, providing a boost to the local community.”
John Longden OBE, chief executive of the not-for-profit Pub is the Hub scheme, welcomed the investment from Heineken.
“With local shops and services closing in many parts of the country, pubs have an increasingly vital role to play as hubs of their communities. Heineken’s continued investment to ensure its pubs remain relevant to the residents they serve is extremely welcome and positive news for all.”
Statistics published last week by the Altus Group revealed that nearly 1,000 pubs vanished from the market last year, but the rate at which pubs are calling last orders is reducing.