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Costa helps boost sales at Whitbread

Costa, the Whitbread owned chain of coffee shops, grew its like-for-like sales by 4% in the 11 weeks to 13 August. Total sales increased by 16.2%.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Costa helps boost sales at Whitbread

In the 24 weeks to 13 August, UK retail system sales rose by 15.7% to £376.5 million with equity stores growing like-for-like sales by 4.6%.

Worldwide system sales climbed by 15.1% to £693.7 million. Within this, franchise system sales increased by 12.2% to £265.7 million.

International system sales grew by 13.6% to £144.1 million following the opening of 11 net new stores in the period with two in EMEI and nine in Asia.

Costa Enterprises, including Costa Express UK & International, delivered system sales of £175 million, which represented a rise of 15.5%. Costa Express installed a further 379 Costa Express machines in the period taking the total to 4,671.

In the full year, Costa plans to open around 220 net new stores. This includes the closure of around 60 lower margin UK franchise stores in petrol stations following their disposal by Esso. It also plans to install around 700-800 net Costa Express machines in the year.

Andy Harrison, chief executive of Whitbread, said: “Costa maintained its rapid growth with worldwide sales growing by 16.2%.

“In the UK like for like sales growth was good at 4%, against a strong performance last year. August is often affected by weather and holiday patterns and trading this August, across all our brands, was softer than expected against strong comparatives from an excellent month last year.”

Across the wider Whitbread group, which also includes Premier Inn and restaurants, sales grew by 3.3% on a like-for-like basis and by 11.1% on total basis in the 11 weeks to 13 August. In the 24 week period, like-for-like and total sales increased by 3.9% and 11.8% respectively.

Harrison added: “Our first half performance keeps us on track to deliver full year expectations, as well as our ambitious growth milestones. This year we plan to open around 5,500 UK rooms, around 220 net new Costa stores worldwide and to install 700-800 new Costa Express machines. Our committed UK hotel pipeline has grown to 14,106 rooms."

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