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JD Wetherspoon to Put a Further Seven Sites Up for Sale

JD Wetherspoon is putting seven more of its pubs on the market this week after warning of the impact of challenging sales and rising costs.
The location of the sites has not yet been disclosed but it is understood most are close to existing Wetherspoon pubs.

The group, which currently operates 847 pubs in the UK and Ireland, put 32 sites in England up for sale in September.

Wetherspoon said today it had opened one pub and sold five during the past 14 weeks, resulting in a cash inflow of £1.9m.
“Trading has been broadly in line with expectations, although October has been a slightly slower month,” chairman Tim Martin said.
“In my comments on the full year results released on 7 October 2022, I set out various threats to the hospitality industry and these continue to apply.

“Those caveats aside, in the absence of further lockdowns or restrictions, the company remains cautiously optimistic about future prospects.”

Like-for-like sales during the period were 9.6% higher than last year and 0.4% up on 2019.
But in an update to investors, the company warned costs of labour, food and repairs were “substantially higher” this year.
The pub group said trading over the past 14 weeks had been broadly in line with expectations, but October had been a slightly slower month.
Wetherspoon chairman Tim Martin said he was “cautiously optimistic” about its prospects if no further coronavirus restrictions were introduced.

Last month he warned that the group is facing a “momentous challenge” to persuade punters back into its bars after they got used to drinking cheap supermarket beer during the COVID pandemic.

The firm said it now remained “cautiously optimistic” despite the cost pressures hammering the hospitality sector. It expects positive cash flow for its 2023 financial year ending July.