Young’s profits are up


The Evening Standard reports today that London-based brewer and pub operator Young’s profits are up, showing  it is perfectly possible to make money in an industry more blighted by the recession than most.

Although times are tough for drinkers with many forced to make do with tins at home, folk are still flocking to Young’s more than 200 pubs.

Food sales are also on the up, partly thanks to the company’s embrace of British Food Fortnight in September.

Chief executive Stephen Goodyear said the “even greater emphasis on our national cuisine and a pub-led celebration of all things British” had captured customers’ imagination.

The group’s 13 hotels are doing particularly well, with revenues up 19% in the half-year to September 27.

Total revenue nudged up 0.7% to £67.7 million, but cheaper finance costs and “efficiency” savings in the pubs helped profits move much more quickly, up 4% to £11.9 million.

That allows the brewer’s board to raise the interim dividend for the 14th year running, up 2% to 6.36p. This is good news for the founding Young family which owns 30% of the stock.

Mark Brumby at Langton Capital says: “Young & Co has the right pubs selling the right things to the right people.”

Net debt for the group is flat at £62.6 million, after investments in the pub estate of £8.2 million. Food sales are up 1.5%.

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