The chief executive of pub operator Enterprise Inns today criticised JD Wetherpoon for its "99p pint" promotion.
Speaking ahead of Enterprise's Annual General Meeting, Ted Tuppen described Wetherspoon's decision to slash prices on a number of drinks as a "a disappointing development".
"Just when the on-trade was winning the battle in the mind of government that the majority of the problems associated with binge drinking could be traced back to low-cost beer in supermarkets - and getting the Government to realise that the vast majority of pubs were responsibly run - it unfortunately gives the detractors a bit more ammunition," he told Reuters.
Tuppen also updated on trading over the past 16 weeks, revealing that, since the start of the financial year, beer sales were running 6% lower than in the same period a year ago. With rental income also down, net income from Enterprise pubs has fallen by 8%.
Enterprise is spending about £1.4m a month to support licensees with rent concessions and special discount schemes and has put all new pub openings on hold while concentrating on disposals.
By Daniel Thomas
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