Coffee Republic, the coffee and deli bar operator, has reported a pre-tax loss of £2.45m for the year to 25 March 2007, compared to £1.45m the previous year. Turnover fell 34.8% to £9.7m, while operating losses widened to £1.63m from £1.05m in 2006. The company said that the increase in its pre-tax loss and drop in sales was due to its conversion to franchising, while the widening of its operating losses was caused by costs incurred with its change in management, a rise in occupancy costs, and investment to support growing franchise network. It said that the move from company-owned to franchised bars had led to a 0.8% rise in full-year like-for-like sales. The group said that like-for-like sales in the second half of the year to 25 March 2007, increased by 3.5%, while like-for-like sales for the three months to 24 June were up 5.8%, driven by a 15.2% rise in its franchise bar portfolio. The company now trades from 71 domestic outlets, a 58% increase from the end of its previous financial year, which includes 13-owned stores, 31 franchised bars and 27 co-branded units. The group said it had now completed 10 regional development franchises and four international master franchises. It also opened its first international outlet in Sunny Beach, Bulgaria, with a further bar set to open in the country shortly. A first site in Turkey will open this week. The company said it was in advanced negotiations for a number of strategic territories and would update shareholders as the negotiations progress. The group said that its trial with Greene King had now been rolled out into 26 of the pub company’s sites, while it is trialling further co-branded opportunities with Roadchef, including a unit at Taunton Deane services on the M5. Peter Breach, chairman, said: “With the renewed vigour injected into the Coffee Republic brand we are on course for a doubling of the domestic portfolio in the current year, as predicted in my half year statement. “Our international focus will deliver further strategic territories to our international network in the coming months and I anticipate our international partners will open as many as 10 international Coffee Republic outlets before the end of the year. “The seed corn of franchise agreements, be they individual, regional or international, has been planted and I look forward with confidence to the future growth of the business.”