Meet our new dedicated caterers Elior UK  

We’re delighted to be working alongside Elior UK, as our new dedicated caterers, after they won a ten-year catering contract with the University of Sunderland.

As part of the deal, Elior is making substantial investment to transform facilities at the University’s two Sunderland campuses – where it will cater for more than 12,000 people across nine food and drink outlets. Their offering will include several newly built coffee shops, including a Starbucks and several artisan coffee shops owned, operated, and trademarked by Elior, like Barista & Baker, Fontanella, and Green Parrot.

Hope Street Xchange’s Barista & Baker opened earlier in August 2018 and has already been a huge success, popular with tenants, visitors and other people who happen to be in the area. With a vastly improved and constantly evolving product range, the new café has become a real talking point.

Connor Hickman, business development director for education at Elior UK, said: “From artisan coffee shops to global flavours, the offer has been designed to appeal to the tastes of students today. To help future proof the offer, we’ve made all the new spaces as multifunctional as possible. But equally, we want to respect the heritage of the University. We’ve been careful not to make changes for the sake of it, and we’ve kept lots of the original outlet names.”

The record-breaking win marks yet another significant contract for Elior in the university sector – following its recent successes with Roehampton University and Kingston University.

Below are some facts about Elior:


  • Formed in 1991
  • Operations in 15 Countries
  • 4th Largest Contract Caterer in the world (3rd Largest in Europe)
  • 10,000 Elior people in the UK in more than 650 sites


  • To be the caterer of choice, dedicated to excellence in customer service, the whole customer experience; the food, the people who serve it, the resources behind the scenes that make us a trusted, innovative partner.
  • In the lead in understanding changing trends in consumer tastes and new service concepts, always looking for ways to improve the appeal of our offers.
  • A team built to combine long experience in the industry with a strong customer-led perspective

Here’s to a long and happy partnership (and lots of delicious cakes!).