I remember first using the supermarket cafes when they offered 99p breakfasts and free refills of coffee.
Tesco are now trying a different approach. They have bought an upmarket coffee chain called Giraffe and are to introduce the brand to many of their stores. Presumably they hope the image it creates will reflect well on the store itself.
Is now the time to be moving upmarket when Lidl and Aldi seem to be taking sales with a minimalist strategy?
There old cafe used to be well patronised, with a basic menu at sensible prices. Its now a Costa franchise, and my sister was told when she attended a 'Customer Day' that they (Tesco) were making more money from it now than before. I can only assume that this is because the franchise holder pays a large 'Rent' and Tesco don't have the cost of staffing and running the operation, because on a number of occasions when I have been in the store at around lunchtime the Costa has only had a very few customers sitting down, whereas in the Tesco days it was usually pretty full.
The old Cafe was well patronised as it was a meeting place where you could get a reasonable meal at sensible prices. A lot of pensioners would meet there for lunch. Now all you can get is overpriced coffee and a very limited snack menu.
I wonder if and when the bubble will burst. Tesco's are manipulating the market's, either for power or profit. In my hometown, Tesco's seem to be forcing their way in areas, that people don't actually want them. And the worse thing about this, is that some council's appear to have agreements with Tesco, that prevents other from moving in as well.