Questions were raised by analysts from the interim results investor roadshow following the firm’s half year results last month (18 March) and the group has made this and the answers public.
In addition, the company revealed its pay rates and reflecting trends in the overall sector, the wage rates have increased compared to consumer price inflation rates, which averaged 1.7% a year.
This year, labour costs have risen by 7.7% and future pay increases will depend on the UK economy’s performance.
The company echoed other companies reporting London trading has been slow however, other large cities such as Liverpool, Manchester and Birmingham have been strong.
Furthermore, it revealed its Lloyds bars, which have music and appeal to a younger demographic, have outperformed JDW pubs and hotels have also traded well.
The company has increased prices at a number of its sites by at least 10p and expects further increases due to “an inflationary environment”.
When it comes to supply issues, the company reported some ‘supply chain’ issues in the autumn with marginal problems since then.
It highlighted the main issue changing from deliveries to inflation, stating most products can be supplied but at an increased cost.
Looking ahead, based on the economy returning to a near normal landscape, JDW is expecting to invest about £75m a year in opening new pubs and enlarging existing sites over the next 10 years.
This included capital expenditure on ‘reinvestment’, sometimes called ‘maintenance capex’, which it anticipates about 3% of sales in the future.
Furthermore, the company revealed it had sold a number of pubs in recent years, usually where it has another pub nearby and stated there could be about a dozen in the course of the next few years.
The company stopped paying dividends amid the pandemic and it is expecting pay them again when profits return to pre-coronavirus levels.