Coffee chain Harris + Hoole has made a pre-tax loss of £12.8m in its year-end results.

The business, of which Tesco owns a significant minority stake, said it had also made an operating loss of £11.3m for the 52 weeks to 23 February 2014.

Nick Tolley, chief executive of Harris + Hoole, explained, in the annual report filed on Companies House, that this was due to the “early life-cycle stage of a number of the shops, which opened at the end of the 52-week period”.

Harris + Hoole opened 18 shops during the period, and announced the closure of six sites in August.

Tolley said: “The UK coffee market is highly competitive and already served by a number of international, national and local competitors.

“Harris + Hoole, through its artisanal approach and differentiated offering, both in terms of its products, its service and its shop environment, is well positioned to continue to grow sales and market share.

“Harris + Hoole’s strategy continues to focus on delivering the best coffee experience on the high street by training the most engaged baristas in the industry, forging close relationships with local suppliers, and using the highest grade, ethically sourced coffee that is hand-roasted each week.”

Harris + Hoole was introduced into Tesco supermarkets by previous chief executive Phillip Clarke, in a bid to attract in customers. 

When the coffee shop announced a series of shop closures earlier this year, Tesco told British Baker: “We continue to work successfully with Harris + Hoole. Feedback from customers in stores with Harris + Hoole coffee shops has been really positive and we look forward to more shops opening in the future.”