City Pub Company guzzles Christmas sales as it prepares to float this year

 
Courtney Goldsmith
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The company hopes to own 35 pubs by the end of the year
The company hopes to own 35 pubs by the end of the year (Source: Getty)

City Pub Company has raised a toast to this Christmas after it nearly doubled like-for-like sales over the five-week festive period.

The figures

The pub owner and operator said sales for the period to 1 January were up 47 per cent compared with the previous year, while sales for the whole of 2016 were up 37 per cent.

It also bagged a milestone £1m in sales over one week.

The company currently runs 29 pubs across the south of England, and just announced it will close on its 30th later this month. Last year over the Christmas period, the company had 19 pubs open.

City Pub Company's rapid expansion includes plans to operate 35 properties by the end of the year.

Read more: City Pub Company says cheers to AIM listing as sales rise by a third

Why it's interesting

The boost in sales came down to better planning and becoming more established in local communities across southern England.

City Pub Company is growing its estate as it works to list on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) by the end of next year.

Read more: City Pub owners look to set up £100m fund to acquire 50 pubs

The company will likely face the same headwinds in the year to come that are affecting pub chain giants like JD Wetherspoon, who today reported slight gains despite facing cost pressures like wage increases, the apprenticeship levy and business rate hikes.

The British Beer and Pub Association has called on the government to cut to the beer duty, which could help improve confidence and investments in a sector that's been hit by hard times.

What City Pub Company said

Clive Watson, chairman of City Pub Company, said:

City Pub Company traded brilliantly over the festive season demonstrating the progress our pubs are making in the communities they serve.

We have strong momentum moving into 2017 both within our existing estate and with five newly acquired pubs coming on stream. With a very focused, talented, dedicated and loyal group of employees, we are confident we can continue to build profitably on last year’s success.

In short

The pub company will be cheers-ing all the way to its AIM listing.

Read more: City Pub Company gears up for IPO after raising £10m

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