Enterpise Inns to up support for licensees

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Related tags: Licensees, Real estate investment trust

Enterpise Inns to up support for licensees
Enterprise Inns has vowed to work more closely with its lessees in a bid to overcome "difficult" trading conditions

Enterprise Inns has vowed to work more closely with its lessees in a bid to overcome "difficult"​ trading conditions.

In its interim management report for the 15 weeks to 12 January, Britain's second biggest pubco said the smoking ban has had "an adverse impact on many pubs"​ and in particular wet-led venues with beer volumes across the industry falling 9% in October and November.

But the pubco said: "Having aggressively churned the estate over the past few years and invested effectively alongside licensees to develop a broader, high quality offering which is less dependent on beer sales, Enterprise and many of its licensees are to some extent protected from the full impact of these beer volume declines."

It said its business model "remains robust"​ and despite "difficult trading conditions"​, EBITDA is running "broadly in line with the same period last year and earnings per share ahead"​.

It said: "However, we remain cautious about consumer confidence and its impact on all sectors of the pub industry over the coming year."

Licensee support

The statement added: "In a marketplace that is likely to remain difficult for some time, it is especially important that we work closely with our licensees, not only to help them to develop new business opportunities but also to support licensees who are genuinely struggling, despite their best efforts, to deal with adverse market conditions.

"In this regard, we continue to offer rent concessions, discount schemes and trading support where appropriate.

"Thanks to the quality of our pub estate, the expertise of our licensees and our support we are not experiencing any material deterioration in the key indicators of our licensees' financial health."

Enterprise acquired 28 pubs £26m and disposed of 10 for £7m during the period and invested £24m, alongside its licensees, in improving the estate.

The pubco said there was considerable interest n a batch of 96 pubs it put on the market in November for sale as alternative use.

Enterprise is still in discussions with Revenue & Customs about a possible conversion to Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) status.

Related topics: Other operators, Legislation

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