Wednesday, 28th February, 2018

New Café Commerce Feature at Hotelympia to Focus Firmly on the Business of the Booming Café Market

A stellar line of experts from the world of cafés and coffee shops will be out in force at Hotelympia next week, as the UK’s largest and most prestigious hospitality event unveils a host of educational seminars designed to equip operators with the skills and knowledge to take their offerings to the next level.

A brand new feature of The Foodservice Show, part of Hotelympia, Café Commerce is a nod to the growing democratization of great café-style offerings, which can now be found in a wider range of non-traditional outlets than ever before, from pubs and workplaces to forecourts and leisure sites.

The programme, which runs throughout the four day show, aims to highlight the growing profit opportunities for those outlets that put food-to-go and hot beverages at the heart of their businesses, and encompasses sessions on crucial issues such as staffing, sustainability, the latest health trends, menu development and interior design.

Hotelympia Portfolio Director, Ross Carter comments: “The high street chains may be in rude health but opportunities for non-traditional players to take market share are many. In recent years, outlets like pubs have shifted their attentions to the profitability of hot drinks, and almost a third of consumers (29%)* now regularly visit a pub for a hot drink over any other menu item. Put simply, those that concentrate their efforts on providing quality will reap the rewards, that’s why the show has brought these experts together, helping visitors, no matter the outlet, benefit from the UK coffee shop boom.”

With staff proving the lifeblood of any business, Monday’s Café Commerce programme sees a session entitled ‘Staff, Skills and their Futures’ in which key representatives from HIT Training and Joe & The Juice will discuss the importance of attracting the correct staff as well as ideas to retain them through training and upskilling, thereby protecting against a potential skills and employment shortage. This is followed later in the day with an interactive panel session entitled Modern Engagement which explores the rising role of apps, loyalty schemes and data in propelling a café business into the homes, laps and pockets of today’s tech-savvy consumers.

Tuesday will see an inspirational seminar hosted by CEO and Co-founder of Gail’s Bakery, Tom Molnar. Sharing the secrets of his success, Tom has successfully grown his London bakery into a 38-strong chain in just over ten years by teaming freshly baked and lovingly crafted breads with in-house coffee blends roasted in small batches by a local supplier.

With sustainability no longer an option but a requirement of a successful business, a ‘Bean to Bin’ session will help guide operators along the route to a zero waste future as well as offering advice to help prepare for the forthcoming Latte Levy. Chairman of the Sustainable Restaurant Association, Andrew Stephen, joins Tiny Leaf founder Alice Gilsenan and Eco to Go MD Lynn Johnson in the debate.

Among Wednesday’s seminars, award-winning coffee shop design consultant Liqui Designs will showcase the importance of design to the success of a business in a session called ‘The Rise of the Coffee Shop Experience’. Encouraging operators to think carefully about aspects such as the flow from the door to the counter, the colour of the walls and the choice of seating, Design Manager Oliver Underwood will be offering his top tips to create the right environment and offer an experience that will keep coffee lovers coming back for more. 

Hotelympia is marking International Women’s Day by creating its very own Women in Hospitality day (Thursday March 8th), marking the event with a programme of curated content across its stages. A hard-hitting session entitled ‘Empowering Women in the Coffee Industry’ will see representatives from the Speciality Coffee Association joined by Marie-Anne Rogers of Masteroast Coffee Company as they celebrate women’s achievements and discuss ways to help drive gender parity.

Café Commerce will also feature a host of innovative coffee-focused exhibitors specialising in the latest products and services required to grow and build a successful coffee business. These include, Blue Cap Coffee, Tetley, Cup&Cino, Franke Coffee Systems UK, Joe’s Tea Company, Beanworks, La Cimbali, Nespresso UK and many more.

Café Commerce is part of The Foodservice Show, which takes place during Hotelympia at London’s ExCel from 5th-8th March 2018.

Visitors are urged to register today at: