Powerful merger created for UK’s £130bn hospitality sector

Plans have been unveiled for a merger to support the hospitality sector in order to deliver its full growth potential.

The merger of the UK’s hospitality trade associations, the ALMR and the BHA, will create a new body, UKHospitality, for the UK’s third largest private sector employer, which combined directly generates £130bn of revenue each year.

Key headlines from the collaboration include:

The new body will bring together businesses from all aspects of hospitality; coffee shops, hotels, pubs, restaurants, leisure parks, nightclubs, contract caterers, entertainment and visitor attractions

UKHospitality will actively speak for these combined industries on the big strategic, structural and regulatory issues and deliver policies to support its strong growth trajectory

The sector generates £38bn of tax for the Exchequer, funding vital services

Hospitality represents 10% of UK employment, 6% of businesses and 5% of GDP

The sector is calling for a dedicated Minister to champion the industry at home and abroad and a sector deal, brokered with government, to support skills and productivity

Combining the expertise, experience and resources of the ALMR and the BHA, the proposed new body would give a voice to over 700 companies, 65,000 venues and 2 million workers.

Alongside the merger proposals, the two bodies have released new figures. The sector is forecast to grow by 4.3% generating 19,000 additional jobs by 2020.

UKHospitality’s objective will be to deliver policies to help the sector secure that opportunity, and would drive employment and innovation, and support

Kate Nicholls

Announcing the merger, Kate Nicholls, proposed CEO-elect of UKHospitality said:

“This sector is a vital, dynamic economic powerhouse whose importance is clear in our communities, our high streets and our everyday lives. It is one of our fastest growing, most productive industries and last year it delivered 1 in 8 of all
new jobs.

“Faced with unprecedented political and regulatory pressures, now more than ever it requires the strongest and most effective voice within government.

“UKHospitality will be that vital voice and I am relishing the prospect of working with members to deliver both strong and connected relationships with government and a shared ambition to reshape the future of hospitality”.

The proposals have been recommended to members and meeting will be held in February to approve them.

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