New initiative Residency seeks to give aspiring restaurateurs a step on the ladder by pairing vacant restaurant venues with emerging chefs, restaurateurs and food and drinks concepts. Launching in London this month, the initiative is a partnership between property consultancy Distrkt and restaurant consultancy service Montana Fogg.
The enterprise aims to tackle the rise in empty restaurant units and the restrictions posed by high rents and business rates, which continue to act as barriers to new ventures. Residency will allow operators to trial their hospitality concepts in ready-made restaurant sites, whilst landlords will also benefit financially and through increased footfall before they find a permanent resident.
Residency brings founders of Distrkt Camilla Topham and Michael Webb together with Sebastian Fogg, Laura Montana and Ed Wyand of Montana Fogg, as they combine their knowledge of restaurant real estate and the hospitality industry. The team will manage each project from start to finish, as they seek out culinary talent and review incoming applicants.
Camilla Topham of Distrkt comments “I’ve been working in the London restaurant property world for more than 13 years now, and I’ve always found it frustrating to see how the permanence and inflexibility of leases and high costs have limited creative Landlords and restaurateurs. Changing market conditions have not helped this. Residency will make the dream of creating a restaurant accessible and fun yet without the risk that comes with it. We believe this is the future of London’s restaurant landscape, and we’re so proud to be shaping it.”
Seb Fogg adds “It’s clear that the demand is greater than ever for original pop-up restaurants in diverse locations, and there so many chefs who just want a place to cook for the public. Start-up restaurant projects are particularly risk adverse, as demonstrated by several closures from even the most capable of operators in recent months, and therefore people are becoming increasingly hesitant to commit to longer leases. Residency will provide a solution to all of the above.”
To find out more, visit their website here
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