Enterprise Inns has reported a "good start" to the financial year in its trading update for the 18 weeks to 4 February 2017, and revealed it is to change its name to Ei Group.
The company reported like-for-like net income growth of 1.6%, "steady improvement" in line with expectations that it attributes to continued stabilisation of rental income and growing income from beer sales, driven by targeted investment, operational support and commercial benefits.
It also reported that the company is changing its name today from Enterprise Inns to Ei Group to reflect a shift in focus from a single, predominantly leased and tenanted operation, to a portfolio of businesses comprising a variety of operating models and trading styles.
The group expects to be operating around 400 commercial properties by the financial year end, of which 181 traded throughout this reporting period and the prior period, delivering like-for-like net income growth of 2.1%. It also expects to have around 250 managed houses operational by 30 September 2017.
Simon Townsend, chief executive officer, said: "We are pleased to have made a good start to the year, delivering continued like-for-like growth in our leased and tenanted business and an encouraging performance from our commercial property and managed house businesses. Despite potential headwinds from legislative cost increases and the new regulatory environment we remain confident that we are on track to deliver our expectations for the full financial year.
"Furthermore, we have made good progress executing our operational strategy, in which the group is evolving as a portfolio manager of operating assets. We believe the time is right to recognise that we now have strong, differentiated divisional businesses operating under a group umbrella and move forward under our new name of Ei Group plc."