Greggs upbeat despite £65 million loss
Greggs has posted a 49.9% drop in like-for-like sales in the first half of its financial year after trading was impacted by store closures across the UK during the Covid-19 lockdown.
Total sales in the six months to 27 June came in at £300.6 million compared to £546.3 million in the same period last year.
The results meant that the company moved to a pre-tax loss £65.2 million from a £36.7 million profit in the first half of 2019.
During the period, Greggs was able to access temporary financing through the Covid Corporate Financing Facility. It also took advantage of the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to enable it to continue employing furloughed staff.
Greggs chief executive Roger Whiteside said: “Following successive years of unbroken growth Greggs made a great start to 2020, coming into the year with momentum and clear strategic plans. The strength of our business model enabled us to secure the liquidity needed to support our business through the current crisis and then to adapt our operation and strategic investment plans in response to the new environment.”
The company said the diversity of its shop locations and broad customer appeal has helped it weather the crisis and that sales in its shops have now reached 72% of the 2019 level.
Whiteside added: “Greggs is now well prepared to deal with the challenges of social distancing and operate through the conditions we are faced with. Greggs remains a much-loved brand with long-term growth opportunities and the business is better placed to adapt to new conditions than ever before.”
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