Gail’s bakery opened in London’s Hampstead High Street in 2005. Today they now have 80+ bakeries in neighbourhoods in and around London, Oxford, Brighton and beyond. They bake fresh, handmade bread, pastries and cakes every day, served with house blend speciality coffee.
In 2018 Gail’s Bakery had 35 stores and a strategy to double the footprint of the business. The company was looking to find new sites in and around London, and begin expansion throughout the rest of the UK. Finding new sites and calculating their potential was time consuming and subjective. The Gail’s Bakery Property team used a mix of proactive search for specific areas and reactive evaluation for opportunistic site availability.
There are a multitude of decision factors involved when selecting new sites. Ranking and prioritising sites for investment was taking substantial analysis time and management review time. The historic selection process for expansion had been effective. However, given the growing size of the portfolio and the increasing number of sites to review, the time was right for a move to a data-driven, consistent and scaleable site selection process.
Gail’s Bakery shortlisted three organisations to help with the expansion strategy support, and chose Algospark as the best fit for requirements.
Using Gail’s Bakery operating data as a baseline, Algospark augmented this with data sets spanning economic, demographic, competition and locations specific factors. Then using development workshops with specialists at Gail’s Bakery, Algospark built the first iteration of the site selection tool. The web based tool relies on several applied AI models so that users can forecast sales and trading patterns for any potential location in the UK. It also generates a prioritised list of locations for proactive site search. This means the property specialists have a clear plan for target sites, and can easily review reactive opportunities as they arise.
“Data analytics has transformed the way we do new site selection. Our partnership with Algospark over the last 3 years has been an important element to our successful expansion.”
Tom Molnar, Co-founder and CEO Bread Holdings.