Ponzi cowboys crying in their beers

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26 Responses to Ponzi cowboys crying in their beers

  1. C.L. says:

    Justin Hemmes’ behemoth hospitality empire has revealed trading has collapsed 20 per cent given his pubs are short 1000 staff, while another billionaire publican, Arthur Laundy, who has operated in the industry for more than 60 years, says staff shortages have never been this bad.

    Yet both Hemmes, owner of the Merivale Group of 140 pubs, restaurants and hotels, and Laundy, who owns 80 hotels, pubs and restaurants on the eastern seaboard, are yet to resort to the actions of their American hospitality colleagues who were last week so desperate for staff they were offering $US1000 sign-on bonuses for workers willing to sell sushi, suntan cream and sarongs.

    The Hawaiian-owned and operated ABC chain store franchises just across from Waikiki beach are also offering sales staff a hefty $US19 an hour which is at least $US3 an hour above the usual American pay rate for similar sales jobs.

    Further out, on the Hawaiian island of Kauai, hotel managers report younger islanders do not want to work making it tough to staff the so-called Garden Island’s bigger resorts particularly its large-scale Marriott hotels which have hundreds of rooms.

    At home, the situation is possibly worse for pub titan Justin Hemmes and his Merivale operation’s up-market restaurants, pubs and bars as well as two stadiums which are short almost 1000 staff, forcing multiple venues to open restaurants, pubs and bars on reduced hours.

    “We are completely undercooked across the entire industry,” said Frank Robert’s Merivale’s group operations manager, who added that some of their venues were opening for five days a week instead of seven days because of the chronic shortage of staff.

    Roberts estimated staff across the group were at least 25 per cent down on the usual 4500 Merivale employed with trading off 20 per cent as a result.

    “It’s affecting us enormously in catering for the Sydney Cricket Ground for instance,” he said. “We have a chronic shortage of chefs, line level cooks, chef de parties, and a severe lack of hospitality staff, as well as sommeliers and professional waiters. We also have a lack of bartenders and a shortage of people entering the industry. We are stretched everywhere. As a consequence our trading is 20 per cent off … and at such a fantastic time. We have never had such a fantastic time of people wanting to come to our venues.”

    Mr Roberts said he hoped the federal Labor government understood the golden egg which is hospitality should not be taken for granted. “If you want to succeed you need customers and people to serve them,” he said. “We need varying degrees of skilled migrants to help us get there or we will linger in a post pandemic state for years.”

    Merivale was recruiting in many countries and interviewing and trialling 55 chefs from all parts of the world. Mr Roberts said full time waiters and bar staff were paid $60,000 a year plus tips and chefs earn above award rates.

    Pub competitor and veteran publican Arthur Laundy said the lack of hospitality staff was the worst he had seen in more than 60 years in an industry where he had built up a portfolio of pubs, resorts and hotels on the eastern seaboard with a focus on NSW.

    “I have never seen anything like this in my life,” he said.

    “Recruiting agencies are ringing hotels offering staff 10 per cent pay increases, they are poaching staff, it’s a fiasco, I have never seen anything like this.’’

    Mr Laundy just forked out $43,000 to an agency to bring in nine chefs from Nepal and the Pacific Islands to help staff his growing empire.

    At his The Log Cabin Hotel in Penrith in Sydney’s outer west, which he said had gone off like a “rocket” since its recent opening, he had to teach 50-60 new staff how to pull a beer.

    “You can’t do that in an hour,” he said. “We have 200 staff out there, and we could do with another 100 staff,” he told The Australian, adding that it was only recently that he was able to open the hotel’s fine dining second floor restaurant because he now had sufficient staff.

    Mr Laundy will start opening his newly revamped Woolloomooloo Bay Hotel on the edge of the city this week, but this hotel has also been beset by a lack of staff. But it is not just finding waiters, bar staff and baristas that had caused headaches for the Laundy Hotel Group.

    Mr Laundy said he was looking for managers for at least five of his prime Sydney city hotels including the Woolwich Pier Hotel in Sydney’s Woolwich, the Oxford Hotel in Drummoyne, the Crossways Hotel at Enfield and the Marsden Brewhouse at Marsden Park in Sydney’s outer west. He said some Sydney publicans had resorted to paying large sign-on bonuses to hospitality staff but that was something he would not do.

    Both pub tycoons are likely to find a way through the staff shortages and have not paused on the growth of their property portfolios.

    Hemmes this month made a dramatic play for a new site in the Sydney CBD, which could one day be transformed into a super complex to rival his landmark Ivy party palace.

    The billionaire quietly picked up the Kings Green development site for about $200m, where plans for a $1.8bn office skyscraper have been scrapped and plans are afoot for one of his trademark high-end bar and restaurant precincts.

    Merivale will push ahead with those plans and the Laundy family, whose acquisitions have included the Bayview Hotel on the NSW Central Coast and the Mercure at Port Macquarie, would also keep buying.

    But publicans without their heft and capacity to offer careers and advancement across multiple venues could find themselves on the outer.

    ————

    Lisa Allen in The Australian

  2. HGS says:

    Higher wages etc, sounds like it is back to the union/guild strangle hold days.
    Higher prices for patron, which is coming anyway, but let the customer suffer by all means.
    Marginal operators closing, probably already happened, and likely to continue in a slowing economy.

    Has staff shortages really got much/anything to do with migrants? Do low skill migrants flock to long hour low pay hospitality work?

  3. Entropy says:

    Most regional pubs used to staffed by backpackers on min wage.
    Still better than fruit picking

  4. twostix says:

    They ran thousands of people out of the industry with vaccine mandates.

    Laundy was front and centre of supporting that shit….

    Laundy backs no jab, no pub despite PM’s push to protect unvaxxed businesses
    ….

    The Federal Government is forging ahead with plans for a vaccine passport system that would let people dine out or attend a sporting match, a move welcomed by many.

    NSW Labor Leader Chris Minns and former federal Liberal MP Craig Laundy came together to promote a plan to make vaccine passports mandatory.

    I’ll say it again, what these scumbags are doing is waging an elitist internationalist class war on the Australian working classes. Running us out of our industries and replacing us with third world servants is the beginning and happening everywhere from pub workers to high paid tech workers, everyone is in the sights outside of the managerial classes.

  5. C.L. says:

    There’s a lot going on here.
    Not just mandates but governments declaring almost everybody “non essential” a year and a half ago and printing money to give them a universal survival wage.

    But forget all of that now and wait tables for a few bucks an hour for a couple of asshole billionaires who’ll dump you for immigrants as soon as they can get away with it.

  6. Pommy Al says:

    Obviously a problem.
    Can’t get a person to serve a beer.
    Total disaster.
    The fact that in the near distant future there will be fuckall tradesmen left to maintain any of the infrastructure to keep society going doesn’t matter.
    I’ll give it 10 yrs and there will be hardly anyone around who could change a tyre.
    Well unless she’d done an advert for Bob jane

  7. Lee says:

    Can’t get a person to serve a beer.
    Total disaster.
    The fact that in the near distant future there will be fuckall tradesmen left to maintain any of the infrastructure to keep society going doesn’t matter.
    I’ll give it 10 yrs and there will be hardly anyone around who could change a tyre.
    Well unless she’d done an advert for Bob jane

    Sounds like the Greens’ wet dream.
    Isn’t one of their aims that anyone who doesn’t want to work won’t have to, instead they can go on to the taxpayers’ teat?

  8. Baba says:

    I’ll say it again, what these scumbags are doing is waging an elitist internationalist class war on the Australian working classes. Running us out of our industries and replacing us with third world servants is the beginning and happening everywhere from pub workers to high paid tech workers, everyone is in the sights outside of the managerial classes.

    Truth

  9. Ed Case says:

    Isn’t one of their aims that anyone who doesn’t want to work won’t have to, instead they can go on to the taxpayers’ teat?

    That’s not the message of The Greens at all.
    As a matter of fact, that’s closer to the Liberal Party Policies.
    The Greens are a Reactionary Party.
    Don’t wanna work?
    Look out.

  10. Ed Case says:

    But forget all of that now and wait tables for a few bucks an hour for a couple of asshole billionaires who’ll dump you for immigrants as soon as they can get away with it.

    Hawke changed the country in the way that you’ve either gotta be very big or very small.
    Sounds like Arthur Laundy is on the treadmill, just keep on buying pubs before the music stops.

  11. Tel says:

    Case, the Greens already announced their plan for Universal Basic Income on the South Coast of NSW … astoundingly expecting the NSW Govt to pay for it.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/australia/comments/ay8ata/the_greens_have_today_announced_a_55_million_plan/

    Pretty sure it never got out of the planning stage, but they run cookie cutter leftist agenda. Note the use of a local “trial” to avoid public debate … same method used in various US jurisdiction.

    Reddit of course are all eager to get off the dole, and onto UBI.

  12. Pommy Al says:

    The main message I get from the greens Ed is that humans are a cancer on the planet.
    They are 100% anti human.

  13. Boambee John says:

    Dick Ed still smoking substances of dubious legality.

  14. Ed Case says:

    Sure, The Greens still get plenty of votes from the Far Left, so they throw them a bone now and then.
    Rather than focus on the bone, have a look at who’s throwing it.
    The Extreme Right.
    They took over the Greens forty years ago.

  15. Boambee John says:

    Dick Ed

    I remain uncertain that what you are smoking is legal.

  16. Mantaray says:

    Entropy (2.48pm); says ;
    “Most regional pubs used to staffed by backpackers on min wage.
    Still better than fruit picking’

    Which is nothing but really, really ignorant city-slicker nonsense….with Labor party propaganda spread on very thickly.

    Backpackers were/ are predominantly Europeans, Japanese and Koreans…who are used to pretty high wages back home.

    In my neck of the woods, field crops are just starting to be picked, at about $2.50 a bucket (of tomatoes) for example. Anybody can do 100 buckets a day after a few days practice, and EASILY 150 a day when they get the hang of it, which = about 20 buckets an hour, which equals about $50 an hour before tax. Pretty poor, eh Labor stooges?

    They do this 6 days a week (7.5 hours per day) and will be grossing 45 x $50 = $2250. I know hundreds who’ve done this. WTF is this Union propaganda being put about on CL’s blog? All it’s meant to add up to is: : Aussies are NOT bludgers but will NOT work for peanuts, when in fact the average younger Aussie IS a F’ing bludger!

    What unemployed NON-bludger wouldn’t get stuck in for two grand a week?

  17. Chris M says:

    WTF is this Union propaganda being put about on CL’s blog?

    Freedom of speech bro! The experts put forward are consistently wrong – so by default everyone is an expert now and all opinions are equally valid or something.

    Pretty nice if tomato pickers can pull that, no idea as I haven’t done it. Talked to strawberry pickers that were more scraping by and weren’t shopping for a new car. Might be fruit specific or perhaps prices continually spike and crash like the solar powered wholesale electricity market.

  18. twostix says:

    They do this 6 days a week (7.5 hours per day) and will be grossing 45 x $50 = $2250. I know hundreds who’ve done this

    You know “hundreds” of people making $9000 a month picking tomatoes. A 100% unskilled job.

    Farmers must be loving the new minimum wage laws that lets them pay pickers minumum wage, the savings they must be making! Huge!

  19. twostix says:

    Back in reality fruit picking now is a massive gamble of going out to the middle of nowhere, ending up on reputable farm but on a small income but be stuck out there with transport and basic living costs eating up 90% of your meager wage each week – fine for backpackers – that’s what they’re literally here to do: work to travel, or, ending up stuck on a plantation style shithole amongst an army of illegal malaysian and chinese peasants sent out here and smuggled onto the farm, living in shipping containers to pay off their servitude back home at $5.50 an hour.

    The Ni-Vanuatu man had come to Australia seeking the chance to work, in order to pay school fees for his children’s education.

    But he spent his time in the country in bonded labour: hungry, unpaid, shunted from farm to farm without explanation, and abused and threatened when he asked for his wages. “It was like slavery times,” he told the Australian federal court.

    Over six months working in the central Queensland town of Childers he was hungry most of the time: some days he had only to eat what he had picked, other days he was given a piece of bread to eat and water to drink.

    Aru left Australia not enriched, but indebted. For six months work, he was paid $150. But Aru’s experience was not exceptional.

    In March this year, the Australian federal court fined the man who brought Aru to Australia, Emmanuel Bani, and his company a total of $227,300 and ordered he pay nearly $80,000 in back pay to 22 Ni-Vanuatu men he sponsored to Australia, and whom he underpaid and exploited. More than half of those men were paid no money at all, despite working for months on farms across Queensland.

    Twenty-two workers told the court they often were given no food for entire days, moved from farm to farm without warning and forced to sleep on buses on the side of the road, or on chairs.

    Aussie parents know better than to let our kids go into that absolute cesspit of an industry other than on a lark as they travel around and which they can bail out of at a moments notice.

  20. Tel says:

    Pretty nice if tomato pickers can pull that, no idea as I haven’t done it. Talked to strawberry pickers that were more scraping by and weren’t shopping for a new car. Might be fruit specific or perhaps prices continually spike and crash like the solar powered wholesale electricity market.

    First thing you learn as a picker is how to be picky.

  21. C.L. says:

    Just because a person is unemployed, that doesn’t mean he or she can leave children (or spouse), lose a rented house/flat (which are now hard to get) and travel hundreds of miles to live in a shed and pick fruit for a brief period. You cannot build a life on that.

  22. C.L. says:

    I also suspect that most people ‘bludging’ on the dole nowadays are simply using it as a disability crutch of some kind. They’re able-bodied but not coping.

    I would have taken a harder-edged view of that once but, frankly, given how morally trashed Australian ‘society’ has become I’m surprised the permanent not coping rate isn’t 25 per cent.

  23. C.L. says:

    Morality and money today…

    I read this story centering on the execrable Guy Sebastian a few weeks ago:

    The Voice Australia coaches have reportedly banded together to demand equal salaries from Channel Seven ‘in excess of $1 million each’, should the same panel return for the 2023 season.

    According to Woman’s Day, Guy Sebastian has spearheaded the union of coaches after finding the current pay disparity to be ‘unfair’.

    The trio of Sebastian, 40, Keith Urban, 54, and Rita Ora, 31, whose salaries are said to make up most of the talent budget, are lobbying on behalf of Jessica Mauboy, 32, who is rumoured to be earning the ‘lowest’ amount.

    Don’t take a pay cut and preserve the company but rob it blind on the pretext of being nice to the black girl. Absolute greedy pigs.

  24. NoFixedAddress says:

    Picking buckets of tomatoes and getting $2.50 a bucket… then they are little ‘cherry tomatoes’ and how big is the bucket!

    In a former life in the 1990’s I actually picked chilies and cherry tomatoes… 50 cents a bucket. The folk that could really pick were refugees from El Salvador who had grown up picking coffee beans.

    I only did it for about 2 weeks and it was another education…. lol.

  25. Ed Case says:

    You know “hundreds” of people making $9000 a month picking tomatoes. A 100% unskilled job.

    It’s an unskilled job, like shearing sheep is an unskilled job.
    No way is anyone going to even make wages for a while picking tomatoes, unless he’s got a mate to show him the ropes.
    The top pickers grew up on farms picking fruit as infants, some blow in has got no hope.

  26. Entropy says:

    Not many people can pick fruit at that rate. Ruth is there are the experts that can, and they people that turn up for a few weeks and never get there.

    Anyway,Mona the matter of paying people more in pubs and the customer having to accept higher prices: reducing the tax take on grog would help a lot there. An awful lot.

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