back to article Cereal Killer Cafe enters hipster heaven, heads online: Coronavirus blamed for shutters being pulled down

The hipster entrepreneur in all of us died a little bit today with confirmation that Cereal Killer Cafe, the best place in London Town for overpriced bowls of breakfast foodstuffs and milk, is not going to re-open its doors. Founders Alan and Gary Keery are saying Cheerios to their bricks-and-mortar eateries in the east end …

  1. KittenHuffer Silver badge

    Please tell me .....

    ..... that somebody named Dexter was involved with them closing down! Please let it be so!

    1. Paul Kinsler Silver badge

      Re: somebody named Dexter was involved?

      There was very likely dextrose in some of their cereals, if that helps at all.

  2. Korev Silver badge

    So, could Coronavirus now be considered a cereal killer?

    1. Danny Boyd Bronze badge

      It can be considered a cereal killer killer.

  3. Korev Silver badge

    I never went, shame it's bowling over before I could laugh at it

    1. juice Silver badge

      Now you're just milking it...

      1. b0llchit Silver badge

        Don't forget to sugarcoat before you leave.

        1. The commentard formerly known as Mister_C Bronze badge

          Looks like they didn't have their Weetabix

    2. Andy Non Silver badge

      So many bad puns, difficult to sort the wheat from the chaff.

      1. chivo243 Silver badge

        I'm guessing business has been a bit soggy of late!

        There used to be a box of Frankenberry in there somewhere?

        1. Dan 55 Silver badge

          I'm guessing business has been a bit soggy of late!

          I'm a-maized it lasted as long as it did.

  4. juice Silver badge

    > Cereal Killers Cafe Ltd filed abbreviated accounts for the year ended 30 November 2018, meaning at had a turnover no more than £6.5m, fewer than 50 employees on average and a balance sheet totalling no more than £3.26m. Maybe there isn’t a pot of Golden Nuggets at the end of this particular rainbow.

    I'm all for snarking, but really: how much money would you expect a company running two cafes to earn? And how many employees would they need? I'd guess no more than 5 or 6 per shop, tops.

    Beer mat time: assuming they had 300 people a day wandering into each cafe, and each person bought a £6 bowl, that works out at about £1800 per day/cafe, or a total annual turnover of around £1.3 million. To bump that up to £6.5m, they'd need to have around 1500 customers a day, which'd make the cafe a standing-room-only experience!

    So, I'd guesstimate they probably had a turnover in the range of £1-3 million per year. Which might not raise them to Apple/Microsoft revenue levels, but still isn't to be sniffed at, especially given how low their overheads were (barring central London rent and business rates, natch): no fancy ingredients or expensive chefs here!

    And now they're gone, though given this was central London, there'll probably be some new Hipster-tastic organic-locally-sourced-hand-crafted-food-experience up and running in their place, probably before I even finish typing this paragraph. And the odds are good that the people behind the counter will be the same people who were pouring milk into the Cereal Killer bowls...

    1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      The £6.5m is what they officially filed, I doubt if their accountants work on beermats. A million bowls of cereal over 5.5 years is more than 300 a day, and you're not including the sales from the online store mentioned in the article.

      1. Androgynous Cupboard Silver badge

        You've misunderstood. £6.5m is the threshold above which you can no longer file abbreviated accounts. All we've managed to evidence is that two lads running what is not much more than an extremely well-marketed corner store were unable to turn over more than £3.25m each, which isn't going to surprise many.

        I say good luck to them, beards and all. It's not like they're dumping nuclear waste in Africa.

        1. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge

          £3.25m each, which isn't going to surprise many.

          it surprises me , given that a $6 bowl is probaly a 1200% markup , that they wernt trousering a couple of million a year each.

      2. juice Silver badge

        > The £6.5m is what they officially filed, I doubt if their accountants work on beermats. A million bowls of cereal over 5.5 years is more than 300 a day

        Someone didn't read the article properly. Or the bit of the article I quoted. Or my beer-mat calculations :)

        As Androgenous Cupboard pointed out, all we know is two things:

        1) they claim to have served a million bowls over 5.5 years

        2) For 2018, they filed abbreviated accounts, which indicates that turnover for that financial year was less than £6.5 million.

        Back to the beer mat, and let's KISS and average it to 200,000 bowls per year. Which, since they had two cafes, means 100,000 bowls per site.

        Which works out at about 280 bowls per day, per cafe, if you assume they were open 7 days a week.

        Throw in the fact that most people will probably buy more than just a single bowl (e.g. a drink), and rounding that up to 300 per day/cafe seems pretty reasonable.

        ... and that's what I scribbled on my beer mat.

        Game, set and bowl of sugar-filled e-numbers to me, I think ;)

  5. Captain Hogwash

    I thought about going

    but someone who'd been said they'd had a frosties reception.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    released a cookbook, been in countless press and TV shows, inspired a musical, and instigated a riot

    Stunning proof of business acumen in the vast field of overpriced bowls of breakfast foodstuffs and milk, I say! Alas, no mildly sexually attractive female / male having a "business relationship" with those empowered to dispense public funds...

    1. Arthur the cat Silver badge

      Re: released a cookbook, …

      I want to know WTF would buy a cookbook about pouring milk on cereal.

      1. The commentard formerly known as Mister_C Bronze badge

        might not just be about pouring milk on cereal

        First year cookery from something over 40 years ago (hence not el reg units of measure). And from memory.

        4 ozs each of marg, soft toffee, marshmallow, and Rice Krispies.

        Melt marg over low heat. Add toffee and marshmallow. Wait until they melt, then mix together. Add Rice Krispies and stir until coated. Pour mixture into swiss roll tin, spead out and chill. When set, turn out and cut into squares.

        1. David 132 Silver badge

          Re: might not just be about pouring milk on cereal

          Or my mum's variant - melt mars bars, butter and golden syrup together in a large mixing bowl over a pan of boiling water. Stir in rice krispies. Spread the mixture out into 1-2" deep baking pans, chill in fridge. When the mixture is set, spread melted cooking chocolate over the top to a depth of 1/4", and then chill the whole thing in the fridge for a couple of hours. Slice into 2" squares and enjoy.

          Mmmmmmm... I'm having something of a madeleine moment here...

      2. Wyrdness

        Re: released a cookbook, …

        Maybe it's a cookbook for making less hideously overpriced cereal. I've recently started making my own, but without the help of a hipster cookbook. The latest attempt was a very tasty fruit and nut granola with maple syrup and rum. Because rum for breakfast makes you a pirate, not an alcoholic!

        1. Unep Eurobats
          Thumb Up

          Re: released a cookbook, …

          +1 for the home-made granola. I make this simple version but increase the butter and dial back the honey. I add chopped dark chocolate once it's cooled. The Cereal Killers' Buster Nut may have been similar but now I'll never know.

          (El Reg: come for the insightful IT analysis, stay for the granola recipes. Who needs Mumsnet?)

        2. renke

          Re: released a cookbook, …

          > rum for breakfast makes you a pirate, not an alcoholic

          I will so steal this line. Thanks for the smile!

    2. Brian Miller

      Re: released a cookbook, etc

      That bowl of cereal was about the same as a pint in a pub. So is a pint also too high? Maybe. It's the punter's choice, though, to either dine and drink at home or dine and drink down the lane.

      1. IGotOut Silver badge

        Re: released a cookbook, etc

        £6 a pint?

        Got to love the London mark up.

        1. Ken Shabby

          Re: released a cookbook, etc


      2. Cuddles Silver badge

        Re: released a cookbook, etc

        "That bowl of cereal was about the same as a pint in a pub. So is a pint also too high?"

        You can get a week's worth of cereal and milk for just a couple of pounds. Meanwhile ordering a cask from the local brewery is about £1.50 per pint. Even the cheapest crappy lager is legally required to be no less than £1 per pint in Scotland and Wales. So at £6 per pint or bowl of cereal, you're looking at a 500% markup at most for a pint, and realistically more like 3-400%, while for cereal you're looking at over 2000% markup.

        Obviously it's the punter's choice whether any of those numbers are too high, but the cereal is significantly more expensive. The fact that pubs continue to exist thousands of years after they were first invented, while the only cereal bar has failed after just a few years suggests that the vast majority of punters consider one fine and the other somewhat less so.

  7. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    So not even cutting VAT to 5% helps?

    1. Wellyboot Silver badge

      Or the 50% per head discount, (max £10 per head per meal) a big impact at this price point, £6 drops to £2.50

      Then again I'm looking to book at a good steakhouse assuming the full 15% gets passed on, it'll pay for the beer.

  8. Mark 85 Silver badge

    I always thought that the late Lester could have opened a restaurant chain with his menu of post-pub noshes.

    1. Insert sadsack pun here

      Most post-pub noshes don't happen in restaurants (unless they've got very dark lighting).

  9. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    Spare a thought for the hipsters...

    I feel sorry for the hipsters in that they'll have to find a new thing with which to try to "one-up" each other to fill the void in their shallow gingham twinged lives.

    I'd suggest they start with the fact that in the real world you can buy a box of Alpen or corn flakes, a couple of pints of milk, a bowl AND a spoon for under £6. The only thing it doesn't come with is a topping of needles pretension so I guess that's where it would all fall down...

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Tech Angle?

    I'm not sure why El Reg is reporting on this distinctly non-technology company folding, when they've still not mentioned Scottish cloud host Iomart buying not one but two rival companies earlier this year with resultant job losses higher than have happened at Cereal Killer.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Tech Angle?

  11. 89724102172714182892114I7551670349743096734346773478647892349863592355648544996312855148587659264921 Bronze badge

    ...they got their just desserts

  12. cortland

    Old -- really old

    The cereal we got at St. Piran's in 1952 couldn't have *cost* more than a ha'pence. The caning was free.

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