What is the ‘Pret Index’ and what does it say about the UK economic recovery?

By: Ajay Pal Singh
Ajay Pal Singh
Ajay worked at Tata Motors in project planning before discovering his passion for stocks. Today, he lives in Canada… read more.
on May 17, 2021
  • Bloomberg ‘Pret Index’ tracks the consumer activity in the U.K.
  • London has been slowly recovering.
  • Index shows an uptick in activity in suburbs and regional towns.

Bloomberg ‘Pret Index’ tracks the consumer activity in the U.K. and provides a visualization of consumer activity in different parts of the economy based on exclusive data from the sandwich franchise chain, Pret a Manger.

Pano Christou, chief executive officer at Pret a Manger, discussed the index on Bloomberg Markets.

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Key takeaways on U.K. economy based on ‘Pret Index’

1. London has been slowly recovering.

CEO said London has been slowly recovering from the impact of the pandemic but the recovery has been slower as compared to other parts of the U.K. The company has been able to open only 50% capacity of its seating areas which limits the traffic and becomes challenging as Pret’s business is based on volumes. Pret is looking forward to the next set of rules to be unveiled in June.

2. Index shows an uptick in activity in suburbs and regional towns.

According to Christou, regional towns and suburban London have held out well in the last few months as people have been working from home and interacting with Pret from those locations for takeaway or delivery. He thinks the hybrid working model is here to stay and Pret has evolved during the pandemic to cater to those customer needs.

3. Slight pickup in airport business.

The index shows a slight improvement in the consumer activity at its shop at the airports. The U.K. put out a short green list of countries where the U.K. residents can travel to quarantine free. Christou doesn’t see significant recovery until some of the major countries such as the U.S. and central Europe are open for travelling.

In some other remarks, The CEO also elaborated on the recently launched coffee subscription services of the company that was successful and emphasized keeping the safety of its employees and customers as the paramount concern for the company as the business recovers.

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