Greggs posts resilient trading results for H1

Greggs, the leading UK bakery food-on-the-go retailer with almost 1,900 retail outlets, has reported resilient trading with good strategic progress in the 26 weeks ending 30 June 2018.

Total sales were up 5.2% to £476m, and company-managed shop like-for-like sales rose by 1.5%.

Underlying operating profit (excluding property profits and exceptional charge) stood at £25.7m (H1 2017: £27.6m). Reported pre-tax profit (including property profits and exceptional charge) was £24.1m (H1 2017: £19.4m).

The company saw continued strong cash generation - £39m net inflow from operating activities (H1 2017: £34m).

Despite extreme weather conditions, Greggs saw continued growth in developing strategic categories, including hot drinks, breakfast, healthier choices and hot food options.

There was a strong demand for value meal deals, which have been expanded to include: broader £2 breakfast offer, now including yoghurts and fruit pots, and new £2 'pizza slice + drink' offer after 4pm.

The chain opened 53 new shops opened, closed 25, and expects around 100 net new shops for the year as a whole.

The brand increased its presence in transport locations, with its first tube station outlet at Westminster, a second Drive-Thru at Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Birmingham New Street station, Glasgow Buchanan bus station and East Midlands Airport.

The company were trading from 1,888 shops at 30 June 2018.

Roger Whiteside, Chief Executive, (pictured) said, 'Greggs has delivered a resilient performance despite challenging market conditions and we have continued to make good progress with our strategic investment programme to transform the business into the customers' favourite for food-on-the-go.

'While we remain cautious in respect of the outlook for sales in the balance of the year given the consumer backdrop, we are confident in the medium and long-term growth potential for the business, supported by customers' response to our initiatives, our strong cash generation and the ongoing strategic investments that we are making.

'Over the year as a whole we continue to believe that underlying profits (before exceptional costs) are likely to be at a similar level to 2017.'