According to its Outlook 2022, 27 Dublin pubs “transacted” in 2021, with a combined value of over €70 million, “the largest market turnover in over a decade” states the report, pointing out that the 10-year average is €35 million, with 2020 at €41.65 million and 2019 at €57million.
Despite this, some 349 pubs or 5% of the total licensed trade stock in Ireland have closed permanently as a result of Covid and 33 of these took place in Dublin according to the Licensed Vintners Association.
Nevertheless, according to Lisney “Demand for prime central Dublin pubs and those in densely-populated suburban areas will remain strong in 2022. Larger pubs that are capable of seating a meaningful number of customers while accommodating Social Distancing or those benefitting from usable outdoor space to accommodate additional patronage, will attract the greatest interest”.
Upper-tier pubs, high-profile venues and pub groups are also likely to be an attractive target for private equity funds and Lisney is aware of several with active commitments in this direction for 2022.
The Review continues, “Many operators invested heavily in their outdoor dining areas in 2021, which will continue to drive customer demand, particularly during the warmer months. As such, we are optimistic about further improvements in trading conditions in the year ahead, which will have an impact on activity and pricing in the licensed premises property market”.
Lisney believes that premises in well-populated areas will recover more quickly than those relying on tourism, “Hence, spots such as Temple Bar will take longer to revert to pre-Covid levels of trade”.