Greggs sees like for like sales slip
8 August, 2012
Greggs has blamed a continuing challenging market and soggy weather for a 2.3% fall in like for like sales over the first half of 2012.
The fall in comparable sales led to a £0.8m decline in profits to £16.5m. A continuing programme of new openings meant Greggs could still claim overall sales growth in the 26 weeks to end-June of 4.5% up to £350m, but the fall in like for likes is a rare setback for the chain, which has been one of the fastest growing brands on the high street over the last few years.
Greggs chief executive Ken McMeikan said the company had seen strong growth in wholesale volumes and sales at new openings, but pointed to British Retail Consortium figures suggesting that footfall on UK high streets has fallen by more than 7% this year. “The market remained challenging, and was particularly impacted by the record levels of rainfall in the second quarter… Greggs was not immune to this.”
He was cautious about prospects going forward. “Conditions for consumers are likely to remain challenging in the second half and we will therefore continue our focus on delivering outstanding value for our customers.”
But McMeikan remained bullish on Greggs’ new openings, reporting that it was on track to launch 90 new sites net this year, having opened 33 in the first half. The openings will include a programme to take Greggs’ Moto sites to 30.
Openings to date have included fourl under the new ‘Greggs Moment’ coffee shop format with fifth to follow this month, plus a new concept ‘Greggs the Bakery’ store in Newcastle.
The first Greggs the Bakery shop will offer 75 new lines including a range of artisan breads and “made to order” sandwiches alongside its mainstream products.