Finsbury Food Group, the UK bakery group, has seen its total company sales increase by 46% to £156.6m in its first half.

The AIM-listed company, updating the market on its trading to 26 December, said that like-for-like sales (LFLs) grew by 7.4%. Its UK bakery division also advanced by 6.1% on a like for like basis and the overseas division, its 50% owned European business, grew by 18.8%, added Finsbury.

The company also pledged to continue to invest through both capital expenditure and investment in its people, to ensure that it is “well equipped to deliver growth and improved shareholder value over the coming years,” despite, “consumer markets remain challenging”.

John Duffy, chief executive of Finsbury Food Group, said: "Performance in the period has been strong, for both the group as a whole and also, importantly, on a like for like basis.

“We continue to operate in an environment with external pressures, however through the group’s leading position in the market, its diversified product and customer base, and its ongoing investment in the business, we are confident that we can continue to drive growth and deliver value for our shareholders."

The prior acquisitions of Fletchers in October 2014 and Johnstone’s in June 2015 are now fully integrated and “performing strongly”, added the company.

National interests

Finsbury has manufacturing sites in Cardiff, Hamilton, East Kilbride, Salisbury, Sheffield, London and Manchester and earlier this month it was revealed the company had won a license for the new Ghostbusters film which is released later this year.

In its last financial year Finsbury saw its pre-tax profits soar by 76% to £11.4m, in part bolstered by acquisitions.