Anglian Country Inns reports strong revenue growth

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Trading update: ACI has shown great resilience amid ongoing challenges, says managing director James Nye
Trading update: ACI has shown great resilience amid ongoing challenges, says managing director James Nye

Related tags Multi-site pub operators Pubco + head office Finance

Multiple operator Anglian Country Inns (ACI) has revealed a 25.8% uptick in revenue, partly driven by price increases to offset inflationary costs with the majority coming from a rise in footfall.

Alongside the year-on-year revenue being up to £18m, from £14.3m in 2022 while site earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) was £3m, compared to £3.9m in 2022.

While the business continues to battle against the challenges faced by the sector such as inflation putting pressure on food margins, making securing stable pricing difficult, most price increases were mitigated.

The overall profit of the business was maintained at 74.2% (the same as the previous year) with wet margins remaining strong and a higher proportion of events and accommodation.

Recruitment challenges

Anglian Country Inns venues:

The White Horse, Brancaster Staithe, Norfolk

The Fox, Willian, Hertfordshire

The Jolly Sailors, Brancaster Staithe, Norfolk

Hermitage Rd Bar & Restaurant, Hitchin. Hertfordshire

Hermitage Rd Coffee & Bagel Bar, Hitchin, Hertfordshire

The Kings Head, Letheringsett, Norfolk

Brancaster Brewery, Brancaster Staithe, Norfolk

Farmhouse at Redcoats, Redcoats Green, Hertfordshire

The Lytton Arms, Old Knebworth, Hertfordshire

The Cricketers, Weston, Hertfordshire

Inflationary costs and increasing the central support team to help aid further expansion meant other admin expenses rose to 25.8% of turnover (against 21.3% in 2022).

ACI also cited recruitment challenges but despite this, sites remained fully open and did not have to restrict trading hours.

Overall, the business focused on improving working conditions and staff welfare, culminating in creating a new head of people role.

Staff retention had improved by 10% by the end of the year alongside a significant rise in employee engagement scores.

Substantial investment

The group said it had made a substantial investment back into its estate including at the Hermitage Rd Coffee & Bagel Bar in August 2022.

Directors reported they were happy with the firm’s performance against the backdrop of the cost-of-living crisis and an anticipated change in demand after the post Covid year.

As well as the financial performance measures, directors have also been increasingly focusing on improving customer and staff satisfaction alongside retention scores in a bid to ensure a holistic approach to running the business for a more sustainable future.

Managing director James Nye said: “We are really pleased to have successfully navigated the plethora of challenges the year threw at us – rife inflation, talent availability, new post-Covid trading patterns to name a few.

“We have shown great resilience and come out stronger as a business for it with the current year trading well ahead of both last year and target, paving the way for further expansion at ACI.”

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