Wetherspoon warns over rising costs
JD WETHERSPOON has posted rising first-quarter sales but warned that its costs have risen significantly over the last year.
The pubs chain said like-forlike sales rose 6.1 per cent in the 13 weeks to October 29, with total sales growing 4.3 per cent. But chairman Tim Martin pointed to increased labour costs, business rates, utilities and sugar taxes weighing on the firm.
He said: “Although it is only a short period, the company has had a positive start to the year. Sales have continued at a slightly higher-than-expected level since we last reported on September 15.
“Costs, as many pub and restaurant companies have indicated, have been significantly higher than last year, and further increases are expected in areas including labour, business rates, utilities and sugar taxes.”
However, the firm anticipates full-year trading to meet expectations . Mr Martin, a staunch Brexit backer, also said the “lowest food prices” can be obtained by the UK by avoiding a transitional deal with the EU.