News / City Life

Most Googled: how many Pret a Mangers are there in London?

Pret a Manger

They say in London you’re never more than six feet from a coffee shop, but Pret has a special place in the city’s heart. Founded here in the mid-1980s, with the first opening in Hampstead, Pret A Manger has since spread across the world and attained near-Starbucks-level ubiquity in the capital. There’s nary a London high street without a branch – so it’s not too surprising that one of the city’s most Googled questions in 2017 was ‘How many Pret A Mangers in London?’.

We reckoned that question deserved an official answer, so we hit the company up for some juicy stats. According to Pret’s people, there are 237 shops in the city – an average of seven per borough – including three meat-free Veggie Prets. The biggest of all is the branch on Old Broad Street in the City. And the expansion continues: last year, 14 new Prets opened across London. As for how to get a free coffee… well, you’ll have to work that one out for yourself.

Love London? Sign up here to get Time Out tips in your inbox every week.



Late Night G

Once one understands how private equity (or translated "greed") works, it's simple why there are so many Prets which started in 2008 with the Bridgepoint purchase. A Times article explains this very simple:

"I also find myself feeling bothered by the sheer number of Pret outlets in London. I used to think there could be no limit and dreamt about a branch opening on my street, so I could have posh cheddar & pickle on artisan bread sandwiches for breakfast, lunch and dinner, but I walked out of a branch in London the other day to find there was another branch of Pret right across the road. The recent claim made by chief executive Clive Schlee that “Pret looks like a huge company but in fact it’s 500 little kitchens”, and marketing material that implies that Pret is still a local store selling healthy products to customers it knows intimately, just doesn’t wash anymore.


It’s obvious what the owners are trying to do. As one veteran private equity investor put it recently: “We buy a business, work out how many restaurants you can get away with in an area until it’s become saturated, then try to convince a new buyer that there is plenty more runway”."
End of quote. From

(I survived Pret as staff on another matter and can only say Pret is NOT what they want the public to believe.