Marston’s Announces Interim Results

Pub operator Marston’s who operate 1,482 pubs has announced its interim results reporting revenue of £369.7m for the first half of its financial year, with an underlying loss before tax of £7.5m.

In its interim results for the 26 weeks ended 2 April 2022, a period which included disrupted trading due to the Omicron variant of Covid-19, the group overall saw a return to more normalised trading.

Like-for-like sales were 97% of 2019, despite restrictions over Christmas, and the business said the Brains pub estate was performing well despite the longevity of restrictions in Wales.

The group said it had clear plans to reposition the pub estate into a simplified structure to generate strong returns, with 10 conversions completed in the first half of the year, and eight planned for the second half.

Chief executive Andrew Andrea said:
“We are pleased that since restrictions lifted trading has largely normalised enabling us to return to profitable trading, as well as focusing – and making considerable progress – on our strategic growth plans towards achieving £1b of sales. We remain on track to reduce the group’s debt by the end of FY2022.

“We continue to evolve our estate to maximise returns and will have transitioned away from the value food segment, our Two for One brand, by the end of September. Investment into our estate through conversions and refurbishments continued in H1, with a further eight projects scheduled in H2, targeting a minimum return of 30%.

“Whilst mindful of the challenges which every hospitality business currently faces, trading remains stable and we look forward to an uninterrupted summer. We are navigating our way through cost increases, mitigating these as much as we can through cost efficiencies and pricing strategies, whilst welcoming customers back without compromise to the best Marston’s guest experience.”

Marston’s employs around 12,000 people across an estate of 1,482 managed, franchised and leased pubs. It also has a 40% holding in Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company.