Leisure/Hospitality: Pubs group Spirit reports further progress during third quarter

The Red Lion at Martlesham, part of the Chef & Brewer chain owned by pubs company Spirit.

The Red Lion at Martlesham, part of the Chef & Brewer chain owned by pubs company Spirit.

Pub company Spirit today reported continued progress for both its managed and tenanted estates during the third quarter.

Like-for-like sales within its managed pubs division in the 12 weeks to May 24 were 6.0% up on the same period a year earlier, taking growth for the first 40 weeks of the group’s financial year to 5.2%.

The group said the managed estate had traded ahead of the market, with “good momentum” maintained in both food and drink sales.

Within the leased estate, like-for-like net income growth accelerated to 5.3% during the third quarter, against 3.6% for the year-to-date, despite like-for-like growth in net turnover slowing to 2.5%, compared with 3.0% for the year so far.

Spirit said the figures reprented a third consecutive quarter of new income growth for the leased esate, illustrating “the continued benefit of our turnaround actions”.

Spirit’s businesses include the Chef & Brewer, Fayre & Square and Flaming Grill pub restaurant brands and the drink-led John Barras and Taylor Walker chains.

Its properties in East Anglia include the Royal George in Ipswich, the Red Lion at Martlesham, the Grosvenor in Felixstowe, the Rovers Tye in Colchester and the Rose & Crown in Wivenhoe.

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Mike Tye, chief executive, said: “We remain pleased with the strong performance over the quarter, with both divisions continuing to demonstrate the benefits of investment in our estate, infrastructure and people.

“In our managed division, we have now commenced our planned expansion of the estate and we continue to see the benefits of the turnaround in the leased division.”