The 886-strong pub operator JD Wetherspoon has today (16 March) published its H1 results for the 26 weeks to 28 January – reporting total revenue was up 3.6% from £801.4m to £830.4 million.
Claiming its “improved performance in the period was due mainly to strong sales and the sale of some lower-margin pubs,” Spoons listed other financial highlights as:
Revenue up +3.6% to £830.4m (2017: £801.4m)
Like-for-like sales +6.1%
Profit before tax +20.6% to £62.0m (2017: £51.4m)
Operating profit also up 13.6% to £74.0m (2017: £65.1m)
Chairman Tim Martin said: “In the six weeks to 11 March, like-for-like sales increased by 3.8% and total sales increased by 2.6%.
“The company anticipates higher costs in the second half of the financial year, in areas including pay, taxes and utilities. In view of these additional costs, and our expectation that growth in like-for-like sales will be lower in the next six months, the company remains cautious about the second half of the year.
“Nevertheless, as a result of slightly better-than-expected year-to-date sales, we currently anticipate an unchanged trading outcome for the current financial year.”
While bar sales accounted for 61% of total sales (increasing by 5.7% LFL), food accounted for 35% (up 6.9% LFL). The rest was made up from fruit machines and room sales.
Spoons said its “philosophy is to continuously try to upgrade as many areas of the business as possible.”