Central London pub sales up by two-thirds with World Cup boost ahead
Fuller's sales performance has remained robust while Wetherspoons struggles
The latest results from Chiswick-based hospitality company Fuller, Smith and Turner (Fuller’s) show that revenues are bouncing back strongly after being hit by local down measures.
Like for like sales across Fuller’s pubs were up by 20% in the six months to 24 September with a surge of 67% in its central London estate.
Other pub countries across the country are struggling with rising energy costs and difficulty in retaining staff as well as customers cutting spending due to the cost-of-living increase. Wetherspoons recently announced its intention to offload a significant number of its pubs including the Plough and Harrow in Hammersmith. Fuller’s, on the other hand, appears to have been relatively immune due to its higher exposure to the London area. Initially the capital was slower to recover from lockdown measures, but it now appears to be seeing strong growth due to a reduction in working from home and a return of tourists.
Revenues grew to £168.9 million compared to £116.3 million for the same six months in the previous year leading to a doubling of earnings per share. This allowed for a reduction in debt and an increase dividend.
Chief Executive Simon Emeny said, “Following on from a good first half performance, we have maintained our forward momentum in the seven weeks post the period end, with like for like sales up by 13% against the same period last year. As commuters return to their offices and international tourists once again visit the Capital, our Central London and City sites have seen like for like sales for the first seven weeks of the second half rise by 20% against the prior year, despite the impact of tube and train strikes.
“While we look forward to our first Christmas free of restrictions for three years, and the added bonus of a FIFA World Cup, we are trading in an increasingly challenging environment. Cost pressures from energy bills, wage and food inflation, and increasing interest rates continue to impact us and all businesses in the hospitality sector. “
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November 17, 2022