Greene King, the brewer and pub operator, has this morning revealed plans to increase the size of its managed estate by a quarter – and said it aims to up its estate from 888 pubs to 1,100 in the next three to five years. Revealing its preliminary results for the 52 weeks to 2 May it said it wanted “to accelerate the pace of change and growth towards a more retail and branded focus.” As part of the strategy, Greene King revealed it would reduce the number of pubs it owns in its tenanted estate to around 1,200 – down from 1,584. Rooney Anand, Greene King’s chief executive, said that a 3.1% increase in revenue to £984.1m and growth of 3.8% in profit before tax to £123m for the year highlighted “the strength, agility and resilience” of the group. Operating profit at the group decreased by 2.3% to £211.3m and it said it had seen 1.1 percentage point decline in operating margins to 21.5%. Like-for-like sales at Greene King Retail, the managed arm, increased by 3.5% in the year and the company said that second half margins had been maintained. At the tenanted side, the company revealed that ebitda per pub was around £52,300 – a drop of 3.2% but it insisted the division was stabilising, with a better second half performance that had seen an increase in ebitda per site. In Scotland, Belhaven managed like-for-like sales grew by 5.5%. The division saw a 10% rise in ebitda to £38.4m. It also revealed it had made a good start to the year with managed like-for-like sales up by 6% in the first eight weeks to 27 June. The company said it had spent £100m of its rights issue and said that the average return on capital invested in the pubs it had acquired was 19.4%. Greene King’s own-brewed beer volumes increased by 3.4% - and a plan to increase investments of its beers is the third part of its strategy going forward, along with the reduction in its tenanted estate and increased focus on branded managed houses. In a statement it said: “Overall, our aim is to be the best pub and beer business in Britain and we believe this retail expansion and brand investment strategy will help us achieve that over the next three to five years. “It will generate faster, profitable sales growth, supported by enhanced purchasing and operating synergies, to deliver a step change in our focus on retail and increase our exposure to the long-term growth of the eating out market.” It added that the acceleration in our retail expansion would be funded via the use of the remainder of the rights issue and an “accelerated tenanted disposal programme”