Wagamama has reported UK like-for-like sales up 6.9% in the first half of the year, to 5 November.
In the second quarter of the year like-for-like sales were up 7.1%, which the group said was an 8.1% outperformance of the market, meaning Wagamama has now outperformed its competition for three years (183 weeks).
Group turnover increased 14% to £157.4 million in the half-year with adjusted EBITDA up 2.2% in H1 to £23.5m.
Turnover in the now 128-strong UK estate was up 12.9% in the half to £150.6m in H1.
During the period the group opened five new UK restaurants – St Peters Manchester, Bedford, Leeds White Rose, Cheltenham and Bracknell, with Reigate opened early in Q3. Two US sites were launched – at Boston Seaport and East Village, New York while six new franchise restaurants opened – three in Madrid, and one each in Bergamo, Jeddah and Doha
A total of 15 refurbishments were carried out in the period with a further four underway in early Q3.
The group refinanced its bond debt in July 2017 resulting in a new bond issue of £225m with coupon of 4.125%.
Chief executive Jane Holbrook said: “We are delighted with the 7.1% UK like for like sales growth in the quarter. Such strong revenue performance has seen the gap between us and the competition continue to widen.
“This robust performance has allowed us to invest in our people, product and property in the UK and US, so that we are in the best possible position for long term success. We are also delighted to have grown our underlying EBITDA year on year.
“We remain relatively cautious about the immediate outlook given market conditions, but with our successful and growing UK and international footprint, combined with our consistent performance and strong cash generation, we remain confident in our ability to identify opportunities and manage through the challenges ahead.”