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First-tier Olympics catering and food suppliers announced

Opportunities for Small and medium-sized catering companies – but know the risks


NEWS May2011

food and catering contracts at the Olympics

In just over a year’s time the world will descend on London for the Olympics and, in terms of food,  every single taste, dietary requirement, and cultural and religious obligation will need to be catered for on a mammoth scale.

The 1st tier suppliers that have been announced will be sourcing products and services on a scale rarely seen and they will soon be going out to tender to secure those supplier contracts.

Contract caterers, foodservice suppliers, ingredients suppliers, food manufacturers, wine merchants, staffing agencies and non-food suppliers will all be called upon to be part of the supply chain.

Can London’s rich diversity of smaller food manufacturing and contract catering firms really win some of that business?

Opportunities for collaboration?

Here at The Olive Grows kitchens, we have already worked with one of our modest-sized catering clients to secure a local contract with Brent Council to supply a new catering requirement.  The lead contract caterer has teamed-up with a further 3 Olive Grows clients to form a collaboration which, collectively, can meet the demand that neither one of the companies could meet by themselves.  So there's more than one way to approach this opportunity...

Niche and specialist products

The list of successful 1st tier suppliers will surprise no one, but this is a mammoth logistical exercise and there will be demand from those companies for a huge range of products and services, many of which will be sourced from medium-sized and smaller companies.

Even companies that do not currently supply those 1st tier contractors could see opportunities to provide specialist products (such as halal, kosher, free-from ranges and ethnic specialities) to meet the diverse demand that will arise for every conceivable cuisine.

For those of you who supply highly specialist, niche and quality ethnic products this could be a rare opportunity and, if you’ve not already done so, you should start making enquiries now to see if your products are of interest.

Finding out about these opportunities

These opportunities will likely be announced through both formal networks, such as

competeFor the Olympics procurement portal

1st and 2nd tier suppliers’ newsletters and websites, and more informal networks, both online and offline.

Twitter is a great source of information-sharing and 1st tier suppliers will have a presence.twittersquare


Make sure you are networked in to all of these communications media so you have the opportunity and time to respond.

Some of the things to consider if you are lucky enough to secure a large order:

  • Cost of supply and terms of trade–are you able to finance the contract (short term increase in cost of sales and time to be paid)?
  • Insurance – are you sufficiently covered?
  • Security of supply – can your suppliers guarantee quality and reliability of supply?
  • Impact on the rest of your business – this is a one-off concentrated contract; will the rest of your business suffer by taking on this work?
  • Sales vs profit and hidden costs –beware hidden costs (e.g., legal, accounting) and penalties for poor performance, which could wipe out profits and irreparably damage the business
  • Capacity – do you have the staff and the facilities to produce the volumes required? Do you need additional, temporary kitchens and resources?

The successful 1st tier suppliers are:

Aramark - feeding athletes in the Olympic Village in London and service the sailing venue in Weymouth, the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games said.

Compass – stadia and event venues, including ExCeL, Earls Court, Millennium Stadium, Wembley Arena and the City of Coventry Stadium.

BaxterStorey - main Olympic media centre.

Amadeus - Olympic Park in Stratford (northern)

Sodexo - Olympic Park in Stratford,(southern, plus at other venues including Hampden Park, St James Park Royal Artillery Barracks and Lords

Prestige Ticketing (Sodexo's corporate hospitality package arm) - Olympic Hospitality Centre

Original story sourced from FMWorld