Magnier and McManus pub investment reports increase in sales

BRITISH pub group Mitchells & Butlers (M&B) – in which Irish financiers John Magnier and JP McManus have a sizable shareholding through their Elpida investment vehicle – has reported a 2% year-on-year increase in sales for the 12 months to the middle of September.

The group – which owns a number of mid-market eateries and pubs such as All Bar One and the Irish-themed O’Neill’s – also recorded a 4.5% year-on-year rise in food sales; a significant development as the group is aiming to become more food-led.

The group’s new chief executive, Adam Fowle, forced an overthrow of the previous board and expressed his pleasure at the speed of delivery of management’s new strategic plan.

“This is a very encouraging performance, particularly given the present consumer economy, and underlines the strength of the Mitchells & Butlers business,” he said.

“The business has demonstrated a resilient performance over the past 12 months, growing both sales and margins during a period that has experienced a subdued consumer environment and the January VAT rise. This resilience highlights the strength of M&B’s brands, the effectiveness of its marketing platform and its operational capability,” management added in a pre-close trading update yesterday.

It added it plans to invest around £200 million (€236m) next year “on single site and small package acquisitions, maintenance and conversions”.

It is understood that Elpida’s current shareholding in M&B amounts to around 17.6%.


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