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UK – Costa Coffee keeps boosting Whitbread sales

LONDON – Whitbread PLC, reported yesterday its trading performance to 28th November 2013. The company saw double digit sales growth over the period under review and is on track to deliver full year results in line with expectations.

Sales update (% change vs. prior year):

Table Whitbread

Andy Harrison, Chief Executive of Whitbread commented:

“Whitbread has delivered another strong quarter, with total sales up 13.8% and like for like sales up 4.3%, driven by the strength of Premier Inn and Costa and an improved performance from Restaurants.

This keeps us on track to deliver full year results in line with expectations.

For the year to date, we have grown our total sales by 13.0%, driven primarily by the continuing expansion of our Premier Inn and Costa networks.

Premier Inn’s total sales have grown by 12.9%, with the opening this year of 22 new hotels with 2,718 new rooms, including two new international hotels.

Costa’s total sales have grown by 20.8% with the opening of 246 net new stores worldwide, including 133 in the UK and 54 in China, bringing our total number of stores to 2,773.

Our network expansion, as we deliver our growth milestones, combined with a strong focus on returns should continue to generate substantial shareholder value and create many new jobs and career opportunities for our teams.”

Trading highlights

Hotels and Restaurants

  • Premier Inn has continued to win market share and, for the 39 weeks, grew total sales by 12.9%, total revpar*2 by 4.0% and total room nights sold by 10.0% to 11.8 million.
  • During the quarter, Premier Inn grew total sales by 13.7%, with a 7.3% increase in the total number of rooms available*3 and like for like sales growth of 5.4%. Total revpar*2 grew by 6.5%.
  • In a strong London market, Premier Inn grew total sales by 16.3% in the quarter with a 10.1% increase in the number of rooms available.  Total revpar grew by 7.6% and our like for like revpar grew by 7.4% with occupancy at 90.0%. The Midscale and Economy London competitive set*4 grew total revpar by 10.6%.
  • In the UK regions, total sales grew by 13.5%, during the quarter, with a 6.9% increase in the number of rooms available.  Total revpar was up 5.9% and our like for like revpar grew by 5.2% with occupancy up 1.2% pts to 81.7%. The Midscale and Economy regional competitive set*4 grew total revpar by 9.9%, benefitting from weaker comparatives last year.
  • Although the restaurant market continues to be challenging, particularly outside of London, the Restaurants business improved its performance and outperformed its competitive set*5, with like for like sales growth of 1.8% in the quarter and an increase in covers of 0.7%.
  • In the UK Premier Inn opened 2,309 new rooms across 20 hotels and six joint site restaurants in the first 39 weeks. For the full year we plan to open around 3,500 new rooms. This is slightly less than originally anticipated including a short delay in the opening of a large Central London Premier Inn, which will now open in early 2014/15. The new UK hotel pipeline remains strong at around 10,500 rooms, with approximately 4,500 expected to be open in 2014/15. The pipeline includes 1,000 rooms for the new brand, hub by Premier Inn, with the first hotel due to open in St Martin’s Lane in the second half of 2014.

Costa

  • Costa continued to perform strongly growing total system sales in the 39 weeks by 19.4% to £882.0 million. Within this franchise sales were up 17.3% to £347.0 million.
  • UK Retail system sales grew by 17.2% to £473.5 million, with equity stores delivering like for like sales growth of 5.3%.
  • Costa Enterprises grew system sales to £215.6 million, up 23.1%.
  • Costa EMEI grew system sales by 12.1% to £141.0 million. The Middle East continued to deliver a solid performance while trading in Central and Southern Europe remained difficult. Costa opened two new equity stores in Paris, building on the two franchised stores in France.
  • Costa Asia system sales grew by 53.5% to £51.9 million with slightly improved like for like sales growth in China for the quarter.  Across Asia the company opened 65 net new stores in the 39 week period and  continue to invest in infrastructure to support its rollout strategy.
  • The company plans to open around 300 net new stores worldwide and to install around 850 Costa Express units in the full year.

Group

  • The strong financial position of the group remains unchanged

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