Whitbread confident after profits boost
The owner of the Harvester, Costa Coffee and Premier Inn chains posted better than expected pre-tax profits today, as it said it was confident of growing the business through a consumer downturn.
Whitbread's surplus of £210.3 million from continuing operations for the year to February 28 represented a 26.3% gain on a year earlier. It also said trading since the year end had been "encouraging".
Whitbread cut costs and slashed debts by more than half last year after selling the David Lloyd Leisure gym chain and its TGI Friday restaurants to focus on growing Premier Inn and Costa.
Chief executive Alan Parker said: "Although a more challenging consumer environment is widely anticipated, we are confident that the actions we have taken, combined with our investment programme, our resilient brands and our strong balance sheet, put us in a good position to continue the growth of the business."