Bury St Edmunds: Record annual profits for Greene King as turnover tops �1bn

PUBS and brewing group Greene King today posted a 13.8% increase in annual pre-tax profits as its turnover for the year topped �1billion for the first time.

The Bury St Edmunds-based company reported revenue of �1.042billion for the 12 months to May 1, up 6% from �984.1million the previous year.

Excluding one-off factors, operating profit grew by 5.1%, from �211.3m to �222.0m, with the pre-tax total rising from �123.0m last time to �140.0million.

The growth was driven by the group’s key retail business, consisting of its directly managed pubs and restaurants, where the rate of increase in like-for-like sales accelerated to 4.9% overall and to 8.1% for food sales.

Greene King said food sales now accounted for about 60% of the division’s total sales with more than 36million meals having been served in the past year.

The retail business also benefited from the addition to 47 additional outlets, with the group’s recent acquisitions – Cloverleaf and Realpubs – also increasing its opportunities in food.

Elsewhere, like-for-like earnings improved within the group’s tenanted and leased pubs division while profits from its brewing and brands business, including the brewing operation in Bury, grew by 4.1%.

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Rooney Anand, Greene King chief executive, said: “This has been a very successful year for Greene King, delivering revenue of over �1bn for the first time, record profits and a 7.4% divident increase.

“Our retail business continues to spearhead our growth as we increase our share of the eating out market. Our retail expansion strategy is on track with our most recent acquisitions, Cloverleaf and Realpubs, trading well.

“Our teams across the business have delivered these results by giving our customers compelling value, service and quality and, going forward, there are numerous opportunities for further growth.”

He added: “Looking ahead, we foresee another testing year. The UK economy continues to face inflationary pressures, impacting on both our customers’ spending power and our cost base, and the impact of the Government’s cutbacks is still to take full effect.

“However, these results show, through our sales momentum, our retail expansion strategy and our strong profit conversion, that we can continue to deliver attractive returns to our shareholders”