Greggs has seen an increase of 2.6% in Q4 like-for-like (LFL) sales following “strong demand” during the Christmas period, according to its latest trading results.
Published in the company’s trading statement (9 January), during the five weeks ending 4 January, the company reported total sales were up 4.8% for the festive period. LFL sales were also up 3.1%, having seen a decrease of 2.9% for the same period in 2012.
Greggs said it enjoyed “strong demand” for its core food-on-the-go products over Christmas, seeing growth in sales of sandwiches, savouries, sweet bakery and drinks.
Total sales for the 52 weeks ending 28 December 2013 saw an increase of 3.8%. However, it also reported a decrease of 0.8% in LFL sales, reflecting the difficult trading conditions earlier in the year, according to Greggs.
Roger Whiteside, chief executive, said he was “encouraged by the improvement in trading” through the year, reflecting the business’ new “Bakery food-on-the-go” strategy.
“As a result, full-year results should be in line with our previous expectations,” he said. “While we face a number of challenges in the coming year we remain confident that we can make further progress with our strategic plan in 2014.”
During the year Greggs opened 68 new shops, including 15 franchised units, and increased the number of shop closures to 68. In total, 1,671 shops were trading at 28 December 2013, with 70% of new shops opened in locations away from high streets.
With 24 franchised shops in motorway service stations, Greggs said it continued to see its franchise model as offering opportunities for further growth.
The business also completed 216 shop refurbishments in the year, 120 of which were in the new ‘Bakery food-on-the-go’ formant. This has now been adopted for all future refurbishments.
The company anticipates its full-year results will be in line with previous expectations, when preliminary announcements are made on 26 February 2014.