Fuller's reports healthy profit boost

By Mark Wingett

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Public house

Fuller's invested heavily throughout the year
Fuller's invested heavily throughout the year
Fuller’s, the London-based brewer and pub operator, has reported a 10% rise in adjusted pre-tax profits to £34.1m in the year to 29 March, driven by its managed estate, which saw like-for-like growth of an “industry leading” 8.3%.

Revenue increased by 6% to £288m and there was a 6% rise in EBITDA to £54.5m. Like-for-like profits in its Tenanted Inns estate grew by 2% and total beer and cider volumes rose by 1%.

Growth in the managed arm was driven by food and accommodation, with like‐for‐like sales in both areas rising by 10.4%.

Meanwhile, since the year end like-for-like growth in the managed division has continued, up 8%, with tenanted like-for-like profits up 4% and Fuller’s Beer Company volumes up 10%.

It has also bought three new freehold sites including two Thames riverside locations and this week opened London’s Pride at Heathrow Terminal 2: The Queen’s Terminal.

Fuller’s reported an 11% rise in earnings per share in the year to 46.94p, with a final dividend up 11% to 9.3p. Net debt to EBITDA reduced from 2.6 to 2.5 times.

Investment

Fuller’s invested a total of £38.1m on capital expenditure during the year – which represents a rise of 29% against last year. It said that it took the opportunity to bring forward investment on refurbishments while sales have been strong and this was particularly true in the second half of the year, which saw 16 major schemes, making a total of 28 for the year.

In its managed division, like-for-like sales across hotels, which comprises, 622 boutique bedrooms rose by the same figure 10.4%. The company said it had improve its online booking system and this is reaping rewards with initial results showing a 60% increase in bookings coming through this medium.

It sold four pubs from its tenanted estate during the year, while three pubs were transferred to its managed division and four have moved in the opposite direction.

In addition, the company invested more on renovations with 24 internal schemes, 21 external schemes and 30 signage schemes across its tenanted pubs.

Training

Since the end of the year, the company has launched a new training service for its tenanted division with a range of online courses being offered to tenants for just £5 each.

It said that 80% of its tenanted estate is now signed up to the Fuller’s Service, which gives tenants a “guaranteed level of regular property maintenance and compliance with the ever increasing burden of legislation, at group purchasing prices”.

The company said it continued to expand both at its Griffin Brewery in Chiswick and at Cornish Orchards in Duloe. In Cornwall, it is further increasing production capacity in preparation for this autumn’s apple harvest while this spring it added 10 new tanks to accommodate increased keg volumes at the Brewery in Chiswick due to sales of Frontier and the growth in exports.

'Excellent year'

Simon Emeny, chief executive of Fuller’s, said: “Approaching the end of my first full year as chief executive, I am pleased to report that Fuller’s has had another very strong year. As a company, we know our strength is in operating at the premium end of the market and we have a clear vision of where we are going and how we will get there.

“Fuller’s Inns has had an excellent year with like for like sales in the managed business rising by 8.3% and Tenanted like for like profits rising by 2%. It’s been a year of change for the Fuller’s Beer Company, with foundation blocks being laid for the future.

“Several new initiatives have come into play during the period including the acquisition of Cornish Orchards, the launch of Frontier, the purchase of the UK distribution rights to Sierra Nevada and the launch of Westside Drinks.

“We are looking forward with anticipation and excitement to the forthcoming year. Investment is taking place in all areas of the company and we continue to be pleased with the impact that it is having on the business.

“The combination of a high quality estate, premium brands and a healthy balance sheet puts us in an excellent position going forward.”

Related topics: Other operators

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