| UK

EG Group launches major recruitment drive to grow its foodservice brands

The petrol forecourt and retail operator plans to create more than 32,000 jobs around the world, including more than 22,700 in the UK, through investments in its foodservice brands

EG Group says it will open 50 Leon outlets a year until the end of 2026 | Photo credit: Kevin Grieve

EG Group intends to create more than 32,000 jobs around the world through the expansion of its directly owned foodservice brands, including LEON and Cooplands, as well as licensed locations of Starbucks and KFC.
The UK-based petrol forecourt and retail operator said the majority of the roles, around 22,700, would be created in the UK by the end of 2026, with a further 9,700 created in Ireland, France, Italy, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Australia and the US over the period.
Average pay for the group’s UK workers aged 18 and above will rise to £10.05 ($12.63) per hour, the group also confirmed.
Following its acquisition of Leon for a reported £100m ($126m) in May 2021, EG Group said it was committed to opening at least 50 outlets a year, primarily in the UK, until the end of 2026 including cafés inside new-to-industry (NTI) sites and convenience stores on EG forecourts.
Leon currently operates 42 company-owned outlets in the UK and a further 29 franchised locations across the UK, the Netherlands, Ireland, Norway, Spain, and Switzerland.
EG also confirmed further expansion for Cooplands, the UK-based bakery and café chain it acquired in October 2021. Cooplands currently operates 187 bakery shops alongside 12 café concepts and three large bakery sites that produce its products, with EG Group planning to open around 30 new sites a year until the end of 2026.
“As EG continues to go from strength to strength, we will be creating a large number of new jobs over the coming years, particularly in our successful foodservice business ‒ which remains a significant growth opportunity globally. We are proud to be a business founded in Britain that invests in job creation worldwide, while focusing heavily on the training and development of colleagues,” said Mohsin Issa CBE and Zuber Issa CBE, co-founders and co-CEOs of EG Group in a joiny statement.
Recruitment has become a major challenge for UK hospitality businesses following the pandemic, with labour shortages exacerbated by the drastic reduction in European workers following Brexit. The situation has prompted other major foodservice and coffee chains, including Costa Coffee and Pret A Manger, to raise wages in a bid to attract talent. 

EG Group's announcement comes shortly after it reported full-year revenues for 2021 rose 16.3% to £1.45bn ($1.82bn), with the company highlighting the success of its foodservice brands as key driver of growth.

Founded in 2001, EG Group operates a portfolio of more than 6,000 petrol station sites around the world, including 700 in the UK and Ireland with licensed branches of prominent brands including Starbucks, KFC, Cinnabon and Greggs.

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