Overall ranking: 52
Pub ranking: 5
Hamish Stoddart and Lee Cash – Snapshot
Hamish Stoddart and Lee Cash, co-founders of the Peach Pub Company, clearly have complementary skills. Serial entrepreneur Stoddart and talented chef Cash created Peach in 2002, transforming their first pub, the Rose & Crown in Warwick, from a down-at-heel boozer into an award-winning business renowned for its high-quality food and drink.
Peach has since opened 12 more pubs and won many awards for its food, service and people. The model, which sees Peach work with owner-operators and joint-venture partners to give them a share in the success of their business, has marked out the company as a genuine innovator in both the pub and restaurant sectors.
In the final quarter of 2009, Peach grew revenue by 8% compared with a year before.
Hamish Stoddart and Lee Cash – Career guide
Stoddart is a management all-rounder with experience in logistics, finance, sales and marketing. After qualifying as a chartered accountant with Coopers & Lybrand, he joined food distributor Cearns and Brown. When the company was sold to Brake Bros, Stoddart worked with other entrepreneurs setting up restaurant businesses before deciding to start one of his own.
Cash started his career at the Bath Spa hotel, under the guidance of Robin Shepherd. From there, he moved to Le Petit Blanc in Oxford and then went on to manage the flagship Le Petit Blanc in Birmingham, where his mentors were Raymond Blanc and Sunnil Panjabi.
Hamish Stoddart and Lee Cash – What we think
In this business, you’re either Peachy or you’re not. And since being Peachy is all about giving people in the hospitality sector the opportunity to succeed in running their own businesses, who would really want to put themselves in the non-Peachy camp?
At Peach’s 13 pubs, Hamish Stoddart and Lee Cash have put into practice what other businesses only pay lip service to: a genuine opportunity for dedicated people to share in the upside of their hard work as well as the risk.
The joint-venture partnership scheme gives Peach partners a share structure that hands out a big percentage of the company’s profit to the people who made it. Peach now has four investor-partners running their own successful pubs, with another five or six people in every pub on profit sharing schemes.
Behind all these Peachy people stands the entrepreneurial and financial savvy of Stoddart and the operational flair and innovation of Cash. If being forever considered a double act ever grates, the co-founders of Peach Pub Company don’t let it show.
The business has picked up awards such as Caterer's Best Places to Work in Hospitality and the Morning Advertiser’s Top 150 Best Food Offer two years running, two Acorns, an Acorn Scholarship, and Observer Food Monthly awards for its bars and Sunday lunches. Several of the pubs are also in the Sawday and Michelin guides.
Stoddart and Cash like to make the point that these are “real pubs in market towns, with people drinking pints; not restaurants in country pubs - a real achievement and something that we’re really proud of”.
Last year saw three new Peach pubs open: the Almanack in Leicester is a modern British gastropub in the heart of the Highcross retail development; the James Figg in Thame, Oxfordshire, offers well-kept beer, honest pub food and a warm welcome; and the Richard Onslow in Cranleigh, Surrey, which brings a gastropub with great hospitality to the centre of England's biggest village.
Peach’s pubs focus on seasonal dishes made with high-quality ingredients bought from trusted ethical suppliers such as Aubrey Allen, Jimmy Butlers, M&J Seafood, Fromage to Age, Union Handroasted Coffee and Purity Brewing.
In the coming year, the plan is to open up to four new sites and add another investor partner, helping to ensure continued growth without compromising on quality - the biggest challenge for any growing business.
Hamish Stoddart and Lee Cash – Further information