Isobel Sibley comments on the Food and Drinks Industry
On the 20th March 2019, Fazenda Leeds hosted the Intelligence Forum group for our monthly networking event. In March we welcomed three speakers; Simon Town; Director of Roots of Yggdrasil CIC, Shareen Zaman; Director of Response Business Finance and Isobel Sibley; Relationships & Events Manager from Fazenda.
Isobel has worked in the hospitality industry for 8 years and has a wealth of knowledge in this phenomenal sector. She joined Fazenda in February 2018 and over the last year she has been given the opportunity to meet some wonderful people and develop her career in Relationship Management. Isobel told us, “It gives me the opportunity to develop and grow as a person as well as learning about everyone’s individual and unique journey. During my time within the company, I’ve learned so much about Brazilian cuisine and fine South American wines. It’s great being part of such a big family and offering such a unique dining concept to our guests.”
Fazenda has always placed emphasis on the importance of relationships with new and existing guests, which is a core pillar of their business values and how they operate. They believe that every business should not only focus on sales, profit and growth but on the needs of each and every guest.
The concept of ‘sharing’ derives from their South American heritage and is a central aspect of Fazenda, from sharing their knowledge and ideas to their passion for great food and wine. This adds to their guests’ unique experience and is a key part of their brand and ethos.
Each restaurant has their own Relationships and Events Manager, who manages corporate relationships and partnerships, as well as local PR & events. Fazenda believes that the best way of growing their business, especially with the significant growth of the hospitality market across the UK, is by getting involved in each city in which they have restaurants, and partnering with organisations such as Northern Ballet, who reflect a similar vision and ethos as them.
About Fazenda Rodizio Bar & Grill
Blending century-old gaúcho traditions with modern sophistication, the Fazenda journey begins at the gourmet sides bar, where guests can enjoy a selection of traditional Brazilian dishes, freshly prepared vegetables, cured meats, among others.
Once guests are seated, passadores begin to serve a selection of up to fifteen succulent meats, cooked to their taste and carved at their table. With a driven passion for exquisite wines, Fazenda showcases a carefully selected wine list; a key ingredient for the ultimate Fazenda experience. From old-world to new-world styles, inclusive of a comprehensive selection of Argentinian and Brazilian wines, there is an offer for all palates. Fazenda’s fervour for the finest food and drink extends to their selection of world-renowned spirits such as cachaças, premium cognacs and an array of outstanding cocktails curated by the bartenders themselves.
The first Fazenda opened in Granary Wharf, Leeds eight years ago with stunning views onto the canal of the River Aire. Its immediate popularity led to steady expansion and has grown organically to welcome restaurants in carefully chosen city-centre locations in Liverpool, Manchester, Edinburgh and most recently Birmingham in November 2018.
The South American operator launched its sister brand ‘Picanha’ in Chester in 2016, which is a smaller, more intimate version of Fazenda offering the same experience with a slightly reduced selection of meats.
Challenges within the sector
Managing Director, Tomás Maunier comments on the challenges of the food and drink industry, from issues affecting the premium casual dining sector, to the impact and uncertainty of Brexit.
‘The food and drink industry is going through a challenging time. Overexpansion of some brands, combined with high rental fees, rates and the fact that wages are going up, has created a volatile market with many closures, CVAs and further uncertainty across the market.’
‘Similar business models in the industry for the last 12 months are seen to be stagnant or negative in some cases, but if we consider inflation applied to prices it is clear that the industry has been shrinking.’
‘Year-on-year figures show that despite of the growth of new venues opening the growth is not at the pace it has been the last few years. The percentage of closures vs openings has increased, and the added speculations of Brexit impact, most of which can already be seen in inflation rates as well as a reduction of job applicants, continues to cause further uncertainty.’