Whitbread sales rise despite poor January weather

26 February 2013 by
Whitbread sales rise despite poor January weather

Whitbread, owner of the Premier Inn and Costa coffee brands, has grown like-for-like sales for the 50 weeks to 14 February 2013 by 3.7%, with total sales up 14.8%.

However, the firm has experienced a tougher run in the last 11 weeks to 14 February, with like-for-likes rising 2.7%, while restaurant sales up just 0.2% over the period. However total sales growth over the 11 weeks was 16.9%.

Whitbread chief executive Andy Harrison hailed more strong growth from the business in a tough environment.

"For the financial year to date, Whitbread has again delivered outstanding organic growth in a flat consumer market, growing total sales by 14.8%," he said.

"Our strong brands continue to win market share, supported by our highest ever guest satisfaction scores and rapid expansion of our network. Good like-for-like sales growth of 3.7% demonstrates the consumer appeal of our brands and also enables us to reinvest in our people and facilities and to grow our estate.

He added: "During the fourth quarter, we maintained our strong momentum with total sales growth of 16.9%, although the headline like for like sales growth of 2.7% was slightly suppressed by adverse weather conditions in January, particularly affecting the restaurants business.

"Premier Inn continued to outperform its competitive set and delivered total sales growth of 14.1% together with like for like sales growth of 2.9%. Our restaurant business continued to improve, outperforming the Coffer Peach industry benchmark, with like for like sales growth of 0.2%."

Over the 50 weeks, Premier Inn increased its total room nights sold by 11.2% to 13 milloion, while over the year to date its revpar grew by 1.6%, with occupancy up 1.1 percentage points to 77.4%.

Costa's total system sales over the 50 weeks were up by 22.4% to £962m while franchise sales were up 18.5% to £383.3m.

Whitbread plans new menu traceability measures after horse meat finds >>

Whitbread like-for-like sales rise 4.5% in first quarter of 2012 >>

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