Blog 10 September 2012

News Updates today in St Francis Bay

Today is a cold wet day in St Francis Bay.  After a lovely weekend we cannot complain.

1.  ST FRANCIS CONNECT ARTICLE - ST FRANCIS RESTAURANTS


How many restaurants do you think are in our area?

St Francis Connect has 6 out of 9, of what we consider to be the more established restaurants in St Francis Bay, advertising on our site. There are 21 in total. How can all these restaurants make a living out of our local population? It’s simply impossible!


The more established restaurants are offering unbeatable specials to their patrons just to make ends meet. Because St Francis Connect advertises our client’s specials on their specific days we put together a spreadsheet to analyze the market and to see which restaurant is offering what special on what day.


From what we could see there seemed to be a good distribution of specials over all the days with a good variety across the board. Wednesday, of course, just about everybody advertises a special and again very little overlapping in terms of menu. This seems to be all good on the surface but it’s not!


Restaurant One advertises a Steak Special for R99.00. Restaurant Two who also specializes in Grilled Steaks has to go one better and offers the same steak at R89.00. Restaurant Three who also has grills on his menu now has to go one better and offers the same special at R89.00 plus a free bottle of wine. And so it goes until you are running at a loss and can no longer pay the rent or your staff.


Some of the unbeatable offers at the moment are “Meal for 4, but only pay for 2”, No Corkage…bring your own wine, 20% discount on your food bill at lunchtimes, a whole kilogram of prawns, a three course meal for the price of one course. These businesses cannot sustain a living like this. Of course, they are all hoping that they can survive until the December season.


St Francis Connect buys into The SFB Business Forum’s philosophy to encourage like-minded businesses to work together. Hair Dressers and Beauty Salons traditionally will not touch each other with a barge pole. We have to try and convince them that this is a win-win situation.


The four biggest categories of businesses in St Francis are builders, estate agencies, accommodation establishments and restaurants. As an example, we are using the restaurant industry for what it is that the Forum is setting out to do…businesses working together.


Scenario
We have 9 restaurants working together. (Let’s face it…none of these are going to give up their businesses unless they are forced to….so we can assume that they are here to stay.)


What are the kind of things that these 9 can do to stay in the game?

  • Order from the same suppliers to get discount on bulk purchases and to save on delivery costs.
  • Decide on who is going to offer what special on which day. Each special must be different. Alternate the days so that every restaurant has a fair share.
  • Work with the same pricing structure where possible. (Unfortunately the rentals differ vastly from R12 000 to R35 000 and more which makes a difference to one restaurants steak price to another.)
  • Support one another without the one asking the other, “So why are you here?”
  • Taking annual leave at different periods of the year.
  • Initiatives to promote St Francis Bay as a food destination, organizing a food & wine fair or integrating the restaurants in any events happening in St Francis Bay.
  • Cooking demonstrations. Encourage clubs such as book clubs to join. Plenty of them in St Francis Bay.

  • It’s either work together and build a good solid foundation or remain on your own with no support. It’s the way of our economic times! The choice is always yours.


    We look forward to seeing you at the Forum meeting on the 27th September at the Big Time Taverna where Peri and his staff will be our hosts.  Join us on Facebook and you will be kept informed of the latest up-dates and specials happening in St Francis Bay and Cape St Francis on a daily basis.  http://www.facebook.com/stfancisconnect.co.za





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