Fuller’s predicts World Cup boost amid strong Christmas bookings

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UB Group Fullers has hailed “strong” Christmas bookings and said it expects an “uplift” from customers watching the World Cup.

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However the company, which owns 386 pubs and inns, also highlighted mounting pressure from rising energy bills, food and wage costs and rising interest rates.

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The group also said that the tube and train strikes have resulted in a loss of around £1.4 million to sales over the past half year.

Boss said Fullers is in “good shape” to deal with these challenges as it has reported positive momentum in recent weeks.

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Chief executive Simon Emeney said: “Following a good first half performance, we have maintained our forward momentum in the seven weeks leading up to the period, with like-for-like sales up 13% on the same period last year.

“While we look forward to our first Christmas free of restrictions for three years and the added bonus of the FIFA World Cup, we are trading in an increasingly challenging environment.”

He said Fuller had been encouraged by improvements in central London and the city being driven by office workers and international tourists.

Sales in central London are up 20% over the past seven weeks compared to the same period last year, despite “the impact of the tube and train strikes”.

Fuller’s revealed that revenue rose 45% to £168.9 million in the six months to 24 September.

Adjusted pre-tax profit for the half year more than doubled to £9.8 million, from £4.6 million a year earlier.

The company’s shares fell 0.2% to 491p in early trade.

Credit: www.standard.co.uk /

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