Bass rethinks Toby Restaurants strategy

Bass Taverns is talking to advertising agencies about the future of its ageing Toby Restaurants brand.

The company’s portfolio of managed pub outlets has expanded in recent years, with the market segmenting and brewers trying to attract more families and women, as well as encouraging a boom in eating out.

A company spokesman says: “Bass used to own only local pubs and Toby Restaurants. Now there are more brands such as Harvester, Vintage Inns and Innkeepers Fayre.”

The number of Toby Restaurants has been cut as more sites are converted to newer themes, but he says there are still over 100 in the UK and that there are no plans to axe the brand. He says the chain will concentrate on offering a carvery for its target market of families and older consumers.

Ian Dunstall, marketing manager for Toby Restaurants, says: “The review of the Toby brand is ongoing. It is being repositioned for the Nineties. Toby has been around for a fair amount of time. It does need revisiting.”

He refuses to comment on any specific advertising plans for Toby. Bass Taverns uses TV advertising – through Impact FCA! – for one of its brands, the Harvester Restaurant chain.

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