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Whitbread reports positive start to the year

17 June 2008 by
Whitbread reports positive start to the year

Premier Inn owner Whitbread has hailed a positive start to the year with sales up across the board.

In the 13 weeks to 29 May, Whitbread saw overall like-for-like sales growth of 7.1% with total sales, which include new openings, 14.6% ahead of the same period in 2007.

Individually, Premier Inn and Costa Coffee lead the way with like-for-like sales growth of 10.7% and 6%, respectively.

Alan Parker, chief executive of Whitbread - who was made a CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours over the weekend - said Premier Inn continued to outperform the hotel market.

Costa continued to grow strongly with new franchise agreements for Hungary, Czech Republic, Solvakia and Singapore.

Whitbread said it was fighting food inflation by reviewing menu prices in its pub restaurant business, which in May launched a new brand Table Table.

Parker added: "The resilience of our business combined with the cost actions we have taken, our investment pipeline and our strong balance sheet put in a good position to continue the disciplined development of the group."

Whitbread to open second Taybarns in Newcastle >>

Whitbread's new IT system to save company £1m a year >>

Whitbread looks to combat rising food prices >>

By Chris Druce

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