Like-for-like sales at Costa, the coffee shop chain run by Whitbread, increased by a whopping 8% in the 13 weeks to 30 May 2013.

Costa grew total system sales by 23.1% to £281.8m, with total franchise system sales up 21.6% to £111.8m.

Andy Harrison, chief executive of Whitbread, said: "Whitbread had a good start to the new financial year with first quarter Group sales up 13.8% and like for like sales up 3.1%, in line with our plan.

“Costa, the UK’s favourite coffee shop, has continued to perform well, benefitting from the cold weather, with total sales growth of 24.8% and like for like sales growth of 8.0%.

“We see no change to market conditions. Our plans for profitable organic growth are well established which, combined with our strong focus on returns, should create further substantial shareholder value.”

It opened 39 net new UK stores in the quarter, 36 in UK Retail and three in Costa Enterprises.  Costa Enterprises (including Costa Express) delivered system sales of £67.1m, up 32.6%.  There are now 2,924 Costa Express units.