M&B axes 1,300 jobs after annual loss of £123m

Pub group Mitchells & Butlers (M&B) has released figures for the 52 weeks ended 26 September 2020, which shows Total revenue of £1,475m, a declined of 34.1% (FY 2019 £2,237m), and 1,300 job losses.

The company, whose brands include Harvester, All Bar One and Toby Carvery, saw operating profit of £8m (FY 2019 £297m), and (Loss)/profit before tax of £123m (FY 2019 £177m).

The full year includes period of enforced closure due to Covid-19 from 20 March to 4 July and shows like-for-like sales decline of 3.5% remained consistently ahead of the market. Adjusted operating profit stood at £99m (FY 2019 £317m)

For the period, decisive and effective action has been taken to protect guests and team members and to reduce costs. New financing arrangements are providing security and flexibility.

The company saw strong operational performance demonstrated on reopening in July, and online feedback scores strengthened following July reopening.

Phil Urban, Chief Executive, commented, 'Throughout a very uncertain and challenging year our businesses and teams have adapted quickly, creating a safe environment for guests and putting us in a strong position to benefit when consumers are able to eat out again.

'We saw direct evidence of this from a strong trading period in July and August before further restrictions came into force.

'With our great estate, balanced portfolio of brands and proven management team, we remain optimistic that we will be able to regain the momentum previously built and continue to achieve sustained market outperformance, when the current operating restrictions are eased.'