JD Wetherspoon reports healthy sales rise

By John Harrington

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Like-for-like sales, Generally accepted accounting principles

Wetherspoon's revenues grew grew 7% to £1.28bn
Wetherspoon's revenues grew grew 7% to £1.28bn
JD Wetherspoon, the managed pub operator, has reported a 5.8% rise in like-for-like sales in the year to 28 July, with profits before tax and exceptionals up 6.3% to £76.9m, in what it called a “year of progress”.

Revenues grew 7% to £1.28bn and operating profit was up 3.7% to £111.3m. Earnings per share (including shares held in trust) grew 12.6% to 44.8p and the full-year dividend of 12p was maintained.

Meanwhile, in the six weeks to 8 September, like-for-like sales increased by 3.6% and in the last fortnight, like-for-like sales were up 2.5%.

Wetherspoons said it planned to open c30 pubs in the current financial year. It opened 29 pubs during the last year, with three sold, resulting in a total estate of 886 pubs at the financial year end.

The average development cost for a new pub (excluding the cost of freeholds) was £1.55m, against £1.42m a year ago, “as we continue to increase expenditure on kitchens, customer areas and beer gardens”.

Unsustainable

Regarding the performance across the year, Martin said: “I am pleased to report another year of progress, with record sales, profit and earnings per share, despite having paid £551.5m in taxes during the year (equivalent to £632,000 per pub) and rewarding staff with £28.6m of bonuses. Our post-tax profit increased by £7.9m, yet our taxes paid increased by £32.2m.

“It is unsustainable to have far higher taxes for the pub industry than those for supermarkets. Already, 10,000 pubs have closed and many others are suffering, through insufficient investment. In particular, there should be VAT equality for pubs, restaurants and supermarkets.

“Wetherspoon, along with many other pub and restaurant groups, is supporting Jacques Borel’s VAT Club on Tax Parity Day (Wednesday 25 September) - and we will offer a one-day 7.5% reduction in our prices, to publicise this inequality.”

Related topics: JD Wetherspoon

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