Shepherd Neame’s coastal pubs drove growth in the year to 25 June with like-for-like managed sales grew 4.4%.
In the managed division wet sales were up 3.1%, food grew 4.2% and accommodation +11.7%.
Like-for-like tenanted EBITDAR rose 2.7% and while turnover in the brewing & brands division was down 4.1% to £57.3m for the year, own beer volume excluding contract brewing increased 0.3%.
In the 10 weeks to 3 September 2016 like-for-like managed sales grew 8.2% and like-for-like EBITDAR from tenanted pubs to 27 August was up 2.2%.
Chief executive Jonathan Neame said the group’s strategy of investing in a smaller but higher-quality estate had led to the average EBITDAR per managed pub growing 42.2% since 2011, with a 25.6% rise in the tenanted estate. During that period the group has acquired 15 pubs and disposed of 46.
Neame also unveiled a re-brand with the company’s logo of 20 years replaced with a “more stylish and modern presentation” which will be rolled out across the estate.
For the full-year the group saw turnover increase 1.2% to £139.9m with statutory profit before tax up 4.7% to £14.4m. Investment in the estate grew to £7.3m (2015: £6.5m)
The group acquired three new sites during the year, two of which will go into the managed estate - the Minnis Bay Bar and Restaurant and the Anchor, Hampstead Lock, Yalding. The group has now secured planning permission to develop these sites and work will be carried out during the coming year. The third acquisition was the Coastguard in St. Margaret’s Bay in January 2016, which opened after a transformational development in March and is operated as a tenanted pub.
These three acquisitions cost £3.3m (2015: two pubs and the freehold of an existing pub for £3.4m). Shepherd Neame has also raised gross proceeds of £11.9m (2015: £3.2m) from the disposal of 13 pubs (2015: 11 pubs) and seven unlicensed properties and land holdings (2015: one unlicensed property), of which the largest was the 10 acres of land at Queen Court, outside Faversham, sold for £7.4m.
Since the year end, it has acquired eight freehold pubs in Kent, Sussex and Surrey from Enterprise Inns as well as the five-strong operator, UES Ltd. The combined investment in these two acquisitions (both of which completed in July 2016) was £13.4m and as a result there will be an increase in net debt in 2017.
In the managed estate, footfall from diners increased by +7.7% (2015: +9.6%) and spend per head by +3.9% (2015: +0.3%) to £11.96 (2015: £11.51).
During the year the company refurbished 39 bedrooms across the managed estate (2015: 68) and now offers a total of 283 rooms (2015: 279). In the coming year 11 rooms will be added at the Ostrich in Colnbrook. Occupancy remained at the record high of 78% (2015: 78%) whilst RevPAR continued to grow by +8.6% (2015: +11.5%) to £63 (2015: £58).
Neame said: “I am delighted to report a record set of results, with managed pubs our key driver of growth, and an impressive performance against our strategic objectives.
In recent years, we have worked hard to improve the quality of our pub estate and modernise our brand portfolio. We have created a much stronger business with sustainable cashflows and the skills and ambition for further growth.
We have made a good start to the new financial year, with a particularly strong performance from our coastal pubs.”