Marston’s has reported like-for-like sales growth of 4.5%, over the Christmas fortnight, compensating for more subdued trading in the first three weeks of December as a consequence of poor weather, for the 16 week period to 18 January, says the brewer/ pub co.
Total managed and franchise like-for-like sales growth for the period increased 1.0%, reflecting continued growth in drinks sales offset by weaker food sales.
Costs have generally been in line with the guidance provided at the preliminary results in November, say the company.
Commenting, Ralph Findlay, CEO said: “Marston’s has delivered a creditable performance in a challenging market. Trading in the key Christmas fortnight was good and has remained solid since which is encouraging. Our balanced pub portfolio enables us to perform well in the context of current market dynamics and our market-leading Beer Company has continued to increase market share in both the on and the off trade in the period. We are making excellent progress on our debt reduction strategy, well ahead of the original 2023 target.
“Looking forward, greater clarity on the political agenda should positively impact consumer confidence. Overall the economic environment for the consumer looks encouraging with low unemployment and healthy wage growth providing us with increasing confidence that the market will grow in 2020.”