Coffee Republic has announced that Steven Bartlett, its chief executive, is to step down at the group’s AGM. The group said that the change would allow him “to dedicate more of his time to his businesses and family in Plymouth”. He will remain on the group’s board as a non-exec and will be appointed vice chairman at the meeting. Bartlett will retain his shareholding in the group and will be replaced by Peter Breach, the current executive chairman, while a permanent replacement is sought. The group said that like-for-like network for the first three months of the current financial year had increased by 2.5%, driven by strong growth by franchises. Total franchise network sales were up by over 70% compared to the beginning of the last financial year.