Industry News | February 17, 2009

Domino's U.K. Posts Increases Despite Economic Crisis

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The nation's biggest pizza delivery chain Domino's Pizza U.K. & IRL reported full-year pretax profit ahead of forecasts on Tuesday and says sales growth had continued to accelerate in the current year.

Domino's, which operates the U.K. and Ireland franchise of the global home delivery brand, says underlying pretax profit for the 52 weeks to December 28 increased by 25 percent to 23.4 million pounds.

Market expectations had ranged between 22.3 million pounds and 23.2 million, with the consensus at 23 million according to a Reuters Estimates poll of nine analysts.

Sales increased by 18.4 percent to 350.8 million pounds, incorporating same store sales growth of 10 percent.

Shares in Domino's have outperformed the FTSE All Share Food Producers Index by 28 percent over the last year as recession-hit customers stayed at home to save money and switched to takeaways, driving the strong sales growth.

The company said a third of its 2.7 million households it delivered to during the year were new customers.

Domino's said it has had an "exceptional" start to the current year with like-for-like sales in the first six weeks accelerating to 15 percent.

The company said it opened 52 new stores during the year, bringing the total to 553, creating 1,600 new jobs and leaving it on track to exceed its target of at least 1,000 stores in the next 10 years.

Domino's is paying a final dividend of 3.2 pence per share, making a total of 5.9 pence, up 34 percent.