Independent coffee and food chain Bob & Berts has set its sights on further growth in the North West of England for the next phase of its ambitious expansion, as it plans to open up to 10 new stores each year.
The BGF-backed business was founded in Portstewart, Northern Ireland, in 2013 by Colin McClean and is known for its distinctive interior style and quality food and drink offering, including its own artisan coffee that’s hand-roasted in Northern Ireland using 100% arabica beans.
Following a £2 million investment from BGF in 2017, the business has grown to 24 sites across the UK, and in the last 12 months opened its first three sites in the North West of England in Lancaster, Kendal and Preston – all of which are experiencing strong sales.
Bob & Berts has made a significant investment in its 25th store which will open in Bury later this month. The 3,500 sq ft site is located in the town’s prominent shopping centre ‘The Rock’ and will create 35 new jobs.
The independent chain, which currently has five sites in Scotland, will also open its sixth Scottish store in Perth in May 2022. For the next phase of expansion, the business is looking at other North West locations including Southport, Lytham St Annes, Blackpool and further north into Carlisle among other opportunities.
Colin McClean, founder of Bob & Berts, said: “From day one we’ve set out to do things differently to other coffee shop chains that you’ll find on your high street, and it’s this unique approach that’s proving ever popular with our growing customer base across the UK.
“We’ve built a solid foundation in Northern Ireland and Scotland and since we opened the first three sites in England, we’ve been extremely pleased with their performance, and the support from the local communities in each location, particularly during such a challenging period for the hospitality sector.”
David Ferguson, co-owner of Bob & Berts, added: “As we look to grow our presence further across the North West of England, we’re looking forward to providing more communities with a local independent coffee shop that offers high quality food and drink, served in a place where people can relax and feel at home in our welcoming surroundings.”