Pubs are the real Six Nations winners

Star Pubs, the on-trade arm of Heineken UK, reported that its total sales across the opening weekend of the Six Nations were up a staggering 42% as rugby fans flocked to their locals.

Pubs are the real Six Nations winners

With Ireland showing their dominance against France in the opening game on Friday, and England, Wales and Scotland all playing on Saturday afternoon, British pubs were bustling with activity as the tournament began.

With afternoon and evening games on the Saturday, the data suggests that punters chose to spend much of the day in their local, with sales of food up by nearly a third.

And in terms of drinks, sales were up 43% with pints being the drink of choice with an uplift of 14%.

Alcohol-free beer also found significant success, with an increase of 49% versus last year’s Six Nations opening weekend — the biggest change of any category.

Lawson Mountstevens, managing director of Star Pubs said: “There is no doubt that the local pub is the best place to watch the games, and whether you fancy a couple of pints, some food or just there to soak up the atmosphere, it’s clear that the Six Nations has given a much-needed boost to the great British pub.

“As the men’s tournament progresses, and then the women’s tournament, we expect to see even more people visiting their local to watch the games throughout February and March.”

In September, on-trade drinks sales in France received a major boost from the arrival of the Rugby World Cup, according to research from CGA by NIQ. Read more here.

This article originally appeared on the drinks business.

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