Snow pushes Mitchells and Butlers' sales down despite strong Christmas

31 January 2013 by
Snow pushes Mitchells and Butlers' sales down despite strong Christmas

Pub, bar and restaurant group Mitchells and Butlers (M&B) enjoyed a positive performance over Christmas but was hampered by the poor weather at the start of the New Year.

Like-for-like sales across the festive season, which M&B counted as the six weeks to 5 January 2013, were up by 4%, while the 14-week period to 5 January saw like-for-like sales rise by 1%.

But the cold weather and snow pushed M&B's performance in terms of like-for-like sales down 0.3% for the 17 weeks to 26 January.

The company said that having appointed Alistair Darby as chief executive in October, it was now focused on the selection of independent non-executive directors.

Darby said: "I am pleased with our performance over Christmas and the New Year. Our planning for Christmas was excellent and we provided our guests with great experiences, as shown by the fact that a third of our pubs, bars and restaurants broke their weekly sales records.

"Since the New Year, trading has slowed as consumers tighten their belts. Although we do not expect economic conditions to become any less challenging over the next twelve months, we remain confident in our ability to perform well in the year ahead as a result of our continued focus on service and amenity coupled with the high quality of our assets, brands and formats."

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