Hospitality Entrepreneurs Have Their Work Cut Out

To help new businesses get going and stay going, AXA has created a
Business Survival Blueprint for the Hospitality industry

One in eight UK hospitality businesses close down every year, making it
one of the hardest sectors in which to start a successful new enterprise
(i). Despite this, hospitality remains one of the most popular sectors for
entrepreneurs to start a new business. The UK has seen start-up hotels and
restaurants outnumber shut-downs by up to 25% in recent years (ii). They
are attracted by the £75.9 billion of revenue generated by the UK
hospitality sector in 2002 (iii), but ignore one of the highest business
failure rates of any industry in the country.

AXA has launched a free Business Survival Blueprint to help aspiring
hospitality entrepreneurs buck this trend towards business failure. The
blueprint, available at, developed in
conjunction with the Hotel and Leisure Best Practice Forum, is the first
in a series designed to help boost survival rates amongst the UK`s
fledgling businesses.
“Running your own tourism, hotel or leisure business can be liberating,
rewarding and lucrative. But there`s a reason that Eastenders` Ian Beale
keeps going back to the drawing board - the hours are long, the starting
salary is low and, if you are starting from scratch, a good idea is not
enough to guarantee success,” says Mike Butler, Risk Control Strategy
Manager at AXA. “This blueprint functions as a guide, designed to help you
to establish your business on firm foundations, so that you can reap the
full rewards of your investments later.”
With 36% of all new businesses folding within 3 years (v), the blueprint
is not just for start-ups. 1.75 million British people are already
employed in the hospitality industry, representing 7% of the population.
The blueprint is designed to help these businesses secure their futures by
highlighting good management practices such as accurate accounting,
supplier management and business continuity planning.

“Charles Forte and Basil Fawlty were in the same business, but with very
different results,” adds Butler. “This blueprint takes entrepreneurs on
the journey that starts after they have had a great idea, and helps them
build it into a successful business. We want to make this guidance and
advice freely available so that new business owners can navigate the traps
that catch so many others.”

“No business has to go it alone,” said Mindy Wilson, Head of Business
Performance Group, CBI. “Every manager needs a source of practical advice
on leadership, management, innovation and how to secure their business.
This is why the CBI`s Fit for the Future campaign is delighted to lend
support to AXA`s Business Survival Blueprint.”


“The Hotel and Leisure Best Practice Forum is all about giving advice to
businesses and helping them become more productive,” says Bob Cotton,
chief executive, British Hospitality Association, the lead organisation in
the Forum. “Any publication that helps businesses become more efficient
and disseminates best practice more widely is to be welcomed.”

The Business Survival Blueprint is available now, and is the first of a
series that will be released by AXA over the coming months. Blueprints
specific to the Design industry, and to the Independent Retail Sector will
also be available this year. Each will contain valuable information
particular to these industries and explain how to create an appropriate
business continuity plan.