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Tesco masquerading as a cutesy independent coffee shop in Crouch End

see this ariticle about Harris + Hoole in Crouch End, 
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-20943739

Tesco actually are founding shareholders in this coffee chain, so it's never been independently owned and run. Although the website says the people running it are a family.

Extract from BBC article:

'With its exposed brickwork, muted lighting and expensive decor, Harris and Hoole is the epitome of a modern, upmarket coffee shop of the kind that has colonised the UK's High Streets in recent years.' (ahem, there are 10 outlets, Ed)

'The one sound you won't hear amid the tinkle of ceramic cups and relaxed chat, is a tannoy announcement saying "clean-up in aisle seven".

Yet Harris and Hoole would not be expanding quite as rapidly as it is without the financial backing of supermarket giant Tesco.

The multinational retailer owns a 49% stake of the firm. Not that you would know this from a visit to one of its 10 outlets or the company's website, where Tesco barely merits a mention.'

Tags: harris hoole, tesco

Views: 454

Replies to This Discussion

Oh this is getting so boring.  Why do people feel the need to put the boot in?  Isn't life hard enough for people at the moment?  Don't we have more to worry about? 

Whilst there is a pretty compelling reason to believe that Tesco is the devil incarnate, they do employ around 250,000 people and provide low cost food for ordinary people on increasingly squeezed budgets.They are being monitored for their rather dubious competition practices and pulled up/fined accordingly. 

Harris and Hoole is a nice coffee shop.  Who own's the other 49% stake?  Perhaps it is a family trying to make a living.

Well said, Cupcake. I couldn't agree more. 

Plus 1.
I love in it there, staff are about a million times more friendly than some of the independent places.
We should just be thankful Budgens didn't have a hand in it.

The problem that I have for it is that they pretend they are independent and artisan and they are not.  The 3 siblings that own the other half of the business already have a chain of about 6 coffee shops under a different brand so its hardly a struggling start up. Presumably they are intent on high street domination hence the link with Tesco and the taking over of many Clintons outlets. Good luck to them with that but dont try and pull the wool over people's eyes that they are some small independent growing organically. They are also owned by an offshore holding co in Ireland a lower tax environment - why one wonders given all the stores are in the UK - no doubt a tax wheeze. Very ethical. 

I dont shop at Tesco on principle but I have had Taylor Street (the other Harris and Hoole brand) coffee and it has been fine. The Crouch End baristas however on the day I went weren't up to scratch and the flat white I had was dreadful. And for such a large unit there seems to be very little seating particularly given the usual Crouch End bugbears of either single people with laptops monopolising tables for 4 for hours or large groups of mums, babies and buggies having get togethers and preventing access to half the shop. I'm sticking to Coffee Circus where the staff can make coffee properly and are friendly. 

One of the reasons life is hard for High Street retailers is that H and H can afford to pay over the odds for rent in Crouch End, thereby pricing out independents.

One of the reasons life is hard for farmers are Tesco's dubious practices.

I did go and try it on an objective basis - Harris and Hoole.

There was a bit of a debate here back in october - Harris and Hoole

I have been reliably informed by at two independent witnesses that the construction gang who made over the building all wore "TESCO" branded workwear.

The website doesn't lead with Tesco but it makes no secret of the Tesco connection

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