Caffè Culture announce extensive programme to help cafés deal with the economic downturn

Caffè Culture, the industry’s leading event, has announced its seminar programme for 2009 (20 & 21 May). Continuing to offer over 200 first-class international exhibitors, providing thousands of products and services specifically designed to meet the needs of the UK’s coffee bar industry, this year’s event will also provide an invaluable resource for owners and managers of cafés and coffee bars who need additional business support in the current economic climate.

Ensuring that visitors achieve the best possible value from taking a day out from their business to visit the show, this year’s extensive programme of talks, industry debates, practical demonstrations and workshops will focus on helping visitors create and maintain a successful business during the recession. Sessions will deal with everything from: developing a business and financial strategy to ensure survival; understanding and capitalising on your customer profile; maintaining quality of service and products whilst maximising profits; creating customer loyalty; building a robust brand and creating an attractive and welcoming environment on a budget.

The Caffè Business Theatre will see Stephen Broome of Pricewaterhouse Coopers offer an in-depth report into current spending habits on the high street, highlighting exactly what people are still spending money on and how cafés and coffee bars can capitalise on this. Industry consultants and authors of Wake Up and Smell the Profit, Hugh Gilmartin and John Richardson, advise on how to recession proof your business, while Russell Smith, author of How to Start a Successful Business and The Independent’s small business columnist, provides a step-by-step business guide to help plan through the tough times ahead. Visitors will hear from the Institute of Hospitality about why ‘hugging the customer’ is an important recession strategy. Hugo Hercod, owner of Relish and a UK Barista Champion, will also explain why it’s not all doom and gloom for the hospitality industry, sharing the secrets of how Relish has broken the mould and is achieving huge success despite the economic downturn.  The full programme is available online:

New for 2009, the Caffè Launch Pad will provide practical demonstrations and talks from an array of the industry’s leading specialist suppliers. They’ll be showcasing innovative new products and services, providing samplings and giving visitors a more in-depth insight into unique their offering.

The Speciality Coffee Association of Europe’s (SCAE) Stage will once again see the UK’s leading baristas test their Latte Art, Cupping and Coffee in Good Spirits skills, as they battle it out in front of a live audience to secure their place at the World Championships in Cologne in June.

Caffè Culture 2009 will also be running a series of in-depth SCAE Workshops where visitors can gain an insight into every aspect of starting and running a successful café or coffee bar. Workshops will include fundamental and advanced barista training, sessions on business planning, designing an appealing and profitable menu, getting the right staff and how to market your business during the economic downturn. With one to two hour SCAE workshops costing from just £30 – £50, it is a unique opportunity for visitors to gain first-hand advice and practical guidance from leading professionals in an inspirational environment. The full programme is available online. Book places at

Commenting on the 2009 seminar programme, Event Director, Elliot Gard, said: “The seminars and workshops are always extremely popular at Caffè Culture, providing a focused and relevant resource for the whole market. This year, more than ever, it is essential that our programme delivers real value for visitors. No industry is immune from the tough times that undoubtedly lie ahead, however those that manage their business in a smarter, leaner and more targeted way are far better placed to see their way through the downturn and come out stronger on the other side. Our aim is to provide practical support and sound business advice to help ensure our visitors are best placed to do just that.”

Caffè Culture 2009 takes place on 20 & 21 May at Olympia, London. To register for free admission visit SCAE Workshop places are limited so please ensure you book early.  Places can be booked online at