Current value sales of self-service cafeterias recorded stronger declines in 2020 compared to overall consumer foodservice and many other major channels such as full-service and limited-service restaurants, as a direct result of the pandemic in Austria The main driving factor behind the weaker performance of many self-service cafeterias is that a large proportion of their sales come from workers during their lunchbreaks, with the latter strongly suffering from the strong trend towards remote working during the year, especially as eat-in traditionally dominates this channel’s value sales. Consequently, a large number of self-service cafeterias also decided not to offer takeaway and/or home delivery during the lockdown periods due to a notable footfall in consumer traffic, although both options gained value share from eat-in during 2020, with the niche of home delivery ordered via third party apps helping to drive strong online sales growth.
Another major factor contributing to the weak performance of self-service cafeterias was the continuing struggles of motorway restaurants which include major brands such as Landzeit, Autogrill, Rosenberger and Marché. During the review period, these self-service cafeterias were increasingly suffering under extremely high operating costs and cheaper alternatives offered along motorways, typically limited-service restaurants.
While losing value share in 2020, Wolfgang Rosenberger GmbH, which operates self-service cafeterias under the Landzeit banner, regained its leadership of the channel from Vapiano AG with the latter experiencing a notable drop in both share and current value sales. Vapiano has been operating at a loss and accumulating debts for years, and therefore its parent company filed for bankruptcy in March 2020 followed by its subsidiary in Austria in April, although it was considered highly successful in operating some of the largest Vapiano outlets in the world.
Self-service cafeterias is expected to recover at a significantly slower rate compared to overall consumer foodservice, and is not expected to return to pre-pandemic levels in terms of value sales (at constant 2020 prices) until 2025. A major factor hindering a stronger recovery will be the ongoing trend towards remote working which is likely to continue to curb the number of customers taking lunch breaks from offices.
TQSR Holding & Development GmbH, the master franchisee of Burger King in Austria, took over the bankrupt Rosenberger Restaurant GmbH in February 2019; the player initially published plans to drive the expansion of Burger King and change the 14 unprofitable Rosenberger self-service cafeterias located along motorways to its new Rosehill Park concept (a multi-brand including Rosenberger, Burger King and up to four more banners) within its first three years.
PROUD GmbH’s brand MyIndigo is expected to record a strong performance among the major brands in self-service cafeterias over the forecast period, particularly as it managed to gain value share in 2020 in addition to recording the lowest value sales decline. Increasingly relying on franchising, the brand has expanded relatively slowly but highly successful over the review period including adding several more outlets in 2020.
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This report originates from Passport, our Self-Service Cafeterias research and analysis database.
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