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Fuller's new year off to a flying start despite the weather

London Pride brewer Fuller’s (LON:FSTA) said its new financial year has got off to a flying start, with like-for-like sales in its managed pubs and hotels up 7.0%.

As the rain bucketed down in London, the company’s results statement, rather optimistically, said: “We look forward to the prospect of a year less blighted by the weather in which consumers are inspired to enjoy the summer in the great British pub, or even better, in that pub's garden."

Revenue in the 52 weeks to March 30 rose 7% to £271.5mln from £253.0mln in the previous year. Managed Pubs and Hotels total revenues increased by 9% and like for like sales were up 2.1%.

Adjusted profit before tax rose 5% to £31.7mln from £30.3mln a year earlier.

The final dividend for the ‘A’ and ‘C’ shares has been bumped up by 10% to 8.35p from 7.60p the year before, taking the full year pay-out to 13.7p, 8% higher than the previous year.

The group said the company had enjoyed a boost from last year’s Olympic Games in the capital, saying that the “legacy of this tremendous promotion of 'brand London' will benefit us for many years to come, both in our iconic London pubs and through our award winning ales which are now enjoyed in some 68 countries around the world.”

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Chief executive Tom Burnett told Proactive Investors he is “extremely excited” by the progress and opportunities in the group’s ticketing business. “I can see enormous opportunity in our ticketing space, both within our existing marketplace and beyond,” he said.

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