PizzaExpress has announced "broadly flat" like-for-like sales across its UK portfolio in the first half of the year as the firm attempts to renovate its site and grow its offering.
The British casual dining originator, established by Peter Boizot in 1965, announced like-for-like sales across the UK of 0.2% for the 26 weeks ending 30 June 2019. Total sales meanwhile experienced an incremental lift of 0.5%.
Meanwhile overall group earnings before adjustments fell across the period by 7.7% to £32.4m.
The firm experienced stronger growth across its international portfolio, where total sales picked up by 11.5% and like for likes up by 1.9%. The 148 sites operated by Pizza Express around the world now make up 21% of the group's revenues.
Jinlong Wang, group chairman and chief executive officer of PizzaExpress, commented: "In the first half of the year, we are pleased that we have remained resilient across all our markets despite sector-wide challenges. At a group level, total sales grew by +2.6% and like-for-like sales were broadly flat.
"Costs across the sector continue to rise and this offset the revenue growth with group EBITDA down (7.7)% to £32.4m. We will continue to maintain our focus on cost control, further improving productivity and efficiency, and are taking a measured approach to expanding our estate."
"Although we are not immune to the cautious consumer environment in the UK and Ireland, we are pleased to have delivered positive sales growth of +0.5% and a largely flat like-for-like sales performance."