Pizza and Pasta Restaurants - UK - January 2011
This report examines the pizza/pasta restaurant/takeaway market in the post-recession era. It looks at the lingering effects of the market’s over-reliance on price promotions, as well as exploring the attempts of various operators to modernise their brands to a more extensive level than has been seen in the market in recent years.
- Pizza Hut continues to be the most popular brand in the pizza/pasta restaurant market with around a fifth of consumers having visited in the last three months (compared to 16% having visited Domino’s and 12% having been to PizzaExpress).
- Pizza/pasta restaurants are missing out on special occasion dining at present: lapsed users tend to be Third Agers who are more likely to eat out for a special occasion, compared to younger consumers who eat out more frequently.
- Upfront offers like BOGOFs are the most popular price promotions/incentives for visiting pizza/ pasta restaurants/ takeaways amongst users, whilst fewer than one in ten are drawn by loyalty cards.
- ‘Light’ menus are increasingly prevalent in this market, despite the fact that four in ten pizza/pasta restaurant/takeaway users don’t care how many calories are in each dish.
- Along with ‘light’ menus, operators in this market are focusing on tapping into all day dining by introducing new specific breakfast and/or lunchtime ranges as well as new dishes which are suitable for a wide range of meal occasions (eg ‘pizzettes’ mini pizza breads).
- Modernisation programmes (eg PizzaExpress’s Living Lab) are now under way in a market which has struggled with market positioning and brand differentiation in recent years. Pizza Hut UK’s Managing Director has also hinted at a future rebranding exercise as he was quoted as saying the brand wanted to shake off its image of ‘fast food plus’.
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