Pret A Manger launches monthly subscription service after Covid sales slump

Pret A Manger has launched an in-store subscription service for customers to pay for the coffee they order each month as part of a major shift in the company’s model after being hit by dwindling commuter numbers.

The coffee and sandwich shop chain axed 2,800 roles last week after reporting that sales had been significantly hit by low footfall in city centres following the coronavirus pandemic.

It said is now launching the YourPret Barista service which will allow customers to buy up to five drinks each day for a month on a £20 monthly subscription.

The offer – which could add up to 150 drinks a month – will cover all barista-made coffees as well as teas, hot chocolates, smoothies and frappe drinks.

Pret A Manger closures
The Pret A Manger on Board Street in Reading, Berkshire, which was one of the stores to be closed by the chain (Steve Parsons/PA)

It said the subscription, which will officially launch on Tuesday September 8, will be free to subscribers for the first month.

Pano Christou, chief executive officer of Pret, said its coffee sales have grown faster than its food sales since reopening sites as it continues on the path to recovery.

In May, the company, which was bought by JAB Holdings in 2018, expanded into its own branded supermarket coffee products for the first time, launching a range of coffee beans and pre-grounded coffee on Amazon.

Mr Christou said: “As people across the UK begin to get back to the things they’ve missed, our new subscription service is perfect for customers who have been craving one of our barista-prepared drinks.

“Whether you’re a coffee enthusiast or tea devotee, we hope this new service helps you start your day strong.

“This is just the first step in our plan to bring Pret to more people.

“We now have the building blocks to establish Pret as a multi-channel, digitally-led business, and YourPret Barista is the first big launch we’re able to deliver through our new technology platform.”

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