Nov 27, 2018

Bakery chain Greggs lifts outlook on sales growth, cost control

Greggs, the UK bakery chain known for its hot sausage rolls and other pasties, has boosted its 2018 earnings forecast after reporting robust sales growth over the autumn season and tight cost controls. The group said on Tuesday it expects 2018 profits before tax, excluding exceptional items, of "At least" £86m. It had said at the end of July that it expects underlying profits to be at a "Similar level" to last year's figure of £81.8m. Total sales increased 9 per cent in the eight weeks to November 24, a pick-up from 8.2 per cent in the previous year's period. Like for like sales at company-managed shops rose 4.5 per cent. "The improved trading performance reported in our third quarter trading update has strengthened further during October and to date in November," Greggs said. Shares rallied 12.8 per cent on Tuesday, essentially erasing what was a significant year to date fall.

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