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Marston’s like-for-like sales rise

By Nikkie Sutton , 24-Jan-2017

Positive news: Marston’s CEO Ralph Findlay.
Positive news: Marston’s CEO Ralph Findlay.

Pubco Marston’s has released its trading update for the 16 weeks to 21 January 2017 ahead of its annual general meeting.

The report revealed like-for-like sales in Destination and Premium groups were ahead by 1.5% more than last year, including like-for-like food sales growth of 0.6% and wet like-for-like sales growth of 1.4%.

Marston’s also stated operating margins were in line with last year and the group’s plans to open at least 20 new pub-restaurants, bars and five lodges in the current financial year were still on track.

Good festive trade

In the taverns arm of the company, managed and franchised pub like-for-like sales were 1.5% ahead of last year.

In leased, profits were estimated to be around 2% in front of last year.

In brewing, Marston’s own-brewed volume increased by 3% in the financial year to date and operating margins are slightly ahead of last year.

Marston’s chief executive Ralph Findlay said: “We traded well over the Christmas period with like-for-like sales growth for the fifth successive year despite tough comparatives.”

Outperforming in brewing

He added: “In brewing, we have continued to outperform and, once again, have achieved good growth with a particularly strong performance in the off-trade.”

In November last year, Marston’s revealed the pub company’s average profit per pub increased by 8% in 2016 .

The figures also saw underlying pre-tax profits rise 7.1% to £98m in the year to 1 October.

Last year also saw 22 new pubs and bars, resulting in the creation of about 1,000 jobs.

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