London brewer and pub operator Fuller Smith & Turner has reported a 23% increase in annual turnover boosted by a full year's contribution from the acquired Gales business as well as two hotel disposals and strong underlying growth.
The London Pride brewer said underlying turnover for the 12 months to 31 March rose to £178.2m, with operating profit up 31% to £29.4m.
Pre-tax profit before exceptional items was up 23% at £22.1m, while the sale of two hotels during the year at £35.6m, along with additional property disposals, resulted in exceptional profits of £20.1m.
Chairman Anthony Fuller said: "It has been an exceptional year, boosted by the addition of a full year's contribution from the Gales business, the profits generated from the sale of two hotels, and strong underlying growth. This year also saw Fuller's become London's last remaining traditional brewer."
Fuller's managed pubs division saw an increase in turnover of 28%, with profits up 41% and food sales representing more than a quarter of total sales. The group's tenanted pubs' turnover rose 39%, with profits up 40 %.
Fuller added that the current financial year had "started well" and was "in line" with expectations: "With new acquisitions, continuing investment in our estate, and the quality of our award-winning premium brands, the board is confident of the prospects for the continued success of the group."
By Kerstin Kühn
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