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New Lightspeed Data Highlights Changes in Diners’ Behaviour and New Insights into Restaurant Staffing

Menu prices are still rising, but slowing down in line with overall inflation; employee turnover is up almost 76%

MONTREAL, Sept. 19, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) --  Lightspeed Commerce Inc. (NYSE | TSX: LSPD) released new hospitality industry data showing that both menu prices and employee turnover are on the rise. The data, which is based on a sample of thousands of restaurants powered by Lightspeed across North America, echoes recent CPI findings that the cost of food away from home is still rising, though the rate of inflation has slowed. 

Powering the world’s best businesses, Lightspeed is the unified POS and payments platform for ambitious entrepreneurs to accelerate growth, elevate their customer experience and become a go-to destination in their space. Key findings from the Lightspeed Restaurant data include:

  • Employee turnover is on the rise: With a staggering 75.78% jump when comparing this data from April-June 2022 to April-June 2023, indicating the staffing shortage at restaurants isn’t easing.  While staffing in some industries is starting to improve, restaurants still struggle to retain workers for a variety of reasons, including wages and job satisfaction.
  • Restaurant prices are still rising, but the rate has slowed: Consistent with past quarters and industry trends, restaurants continue to raise prices for menu items—but the rate of increase has slowed since the first calendar quarter (Jan-March 2023). Overall, we saw a 4.73% year-over-year increase in median item price and a 6.96% year-over-year increase in median burger price.
  • Diners are going out more often: People are dining out more frequently at both fine dining and fast casual restaurants, with total transactions rising 3.60% year-over-year for fine dining and 3.53% for fast casual. 
  • Tipping is on the rise: Tips are up when consumers dine out, with the highest tips occurring at bars and fine dining restaurants. On the other hand, average takeout and delivery tips dropped to around 8%, suggesting consumers might be pulling back on tips outside of traditional service venues. Read more in Lightspeed’s deep dive on tipping trends.

Jarred Drown of Terrace Bay Restaurant in Gladstone, MI, acknowledges the need to raise pricing to keep up with both inflation and staff shortages. “Both food prices and labor costs have gone up substantially,” he explains. “The food costs you don't control, that cost goes up. And then you have to adjust labor costs, which you do control. Because when you can't find employees, you have to make a decision: Am I going to run short staffed? Or am I going to raise wages and make sure that we retain the best people in the industry in our area? Being a more upscale place, we found that you just have to be willing to raise your prices and your customers will pay it.”

“We know the challenges bars and restaurants are facing,” notes Peter Dougherty, General Manager of Hospitality at Lightspeed Commerce. “Our mission at Lightspeed is to give them the tools, insights and expert guidance they need to streamline operations and work more efficiently. Technology like Lightspeed Restaurant helps hospitality businesses increase speed of service and table turnover while reducing time spent on manual tasks, so they have more time to spend with guests—even when they’re short-staffed.” 

Tools like Lightspeed’s Advanced Insights can also help bars and restaurants navigate inflation and staffing shortages by identifying their most profitable hours, servers and menu items so they can optimize scheduling and menu planning. Beyond tracking peak sales periods and staff performance, as Grant Macdonald of Kotsu Ramen & Gyoza explains, “Lightspeed Restaurant gives us a great analytics tool that on one axis tells us how many sales we've had of a given item, and on the other axis says, how much of that is driving repeat business… Those pieces of information are incredibly valuable for us. Advanced Insights gives us all these tools that allow us to dig down into our operation and get ideas, get thoughts and insights that we might not have had intuitively—but the data shows it to us.”

Lightspeed Restaurant is on average 40% faster than other leading POS systems in North America.* Lightspeed powers the world’s best restaurants, including: Daniel Boulud Group (NYC), Atomic Hospitality Group (Chicago), Alinea Group (Chicago), Canlis (Seattle), Big Mamma (Europe), Kei (Paris) and Maybe Sammy (Sydney), and is now available in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany, and Australia.

Dive into the transformative features of Lightspeed Restaurant on our website, or to witness its powerful capabilities, see www.lightspeedhq.com/pos/restaurant.

Methodology

Lightspeed analyzed internal data from thousands of restaurants powered by Lightspeed across North America, comparing the period from April-June 2023 against April-June 2022. The analysis reviewed tipping data, check size and more across cohorts of bars, casual, fine dining, upscale and fast casual hospitality businesses.

* Based on internal testing in August 2022 of industry peer check management and other workflows. Lightspeed Restaurant POS requires on average 40% fewer clicks for completing check splitting, discounting and other basic POS workflows than certain industry-leading POS systems in North America. Results outside such internal testing could vary depending on location and other factors.

About Lightspeed 

Powering the businesses that are the backbone of the global economy, Lightspeed’s one-stop commerce platform helps merchants innovate to simplify, scale and provide exceptional customer experiences. Our cloud commerce solution transforms and unifies online and physical operations, multichannel sales, expansion to new locations, global payments, financial solutions and connection to supplier networks.

Founded in Montréal, Canada in 2005, Lightspeed is dual-listed on the New York Stock Exchange and Toronto Stock Exchange (NYSE: LSPD) (TSX: LSPD). With teams across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific, the company serves retail, hospitality and golf businesses in over 100 countries.

For more information, see www.lightspeedhq.com.
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Forward-Looking Statements

This news release may include forward-looking information and forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws ("forward-looking statements"). Forward-looking statements are statements that are predictive in nature, depend upon or refer to future events or conditions and are identified by words such as "will", "expects", "anticipates", "intends", "plans", "believes", "estimates" or similar expressions concerning matters that are not historical facts. Such statements are based on current expectations of Lightspeed's management and inherently involve numerous risks and uncertainties, known and unknown, including economic factors. A number of risks, uncertainties and other factors may cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements contained in this news release, including, among other factors, those risk factors identified in our most recent Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations, under "Risk Factors" in our most recent Annual Information Form, and in our other filings with the Canadian securities regulatory authorities and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, all of which are available under our profiles on SEDAR at www.sedarplus.ca and on EDGAR at www.sec.gov. Readers are cautioned to consider these and other factors carefully when making decisions with respect to Lightspeed's subordinate voting shares and not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements contained in this news release are not guarantees of future performance and, while forward-looking statements are based on certain assumptions that Lightspeed considers reasonable, actual events and results could differ materially from those expressed or implied by forward-looking statements made by Lightspeed. Except as may be expressly required by applicable law, Lightspeed does not undertake any obligation to update publicly or revise any such forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.


For further information: Media Contacts: Canada: Victoria Baker, NKPR - victoriab@nkpr.net; USA: Jennifer Fugel, Newsmaker Group- jfugel@newsmakergroup.com; Lightspeed Media Relations - media@lightspeedhq.com; Investor Relations: Gus Papageorgiou, Lightspeed Investor Relations - investorrelations@lightspeedhq.com

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Sara Basdeo
Lightspeed Commerce Inc.
6475376271
sara.basdeo@lightspeedhq.com

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