Booker rises above retail gloom with jump in sales

BRITAIN’S biggest cash and carry wholesaler has defied the retail sector gloom with a sales lift.

Booker, which runs more than 170 branches in the UK, saw like-for-like sales rise by 7.4 per cent in the 12 weeks to 17 June.

Non-tobacco sales were up 5.7 per cent and tobacco sales up 10.1 per cent, the firm said.

Booker is the UK’s largest food supplier to the cinema sector and also supplies prisons, Marks & Spencer and over 300,000 smaller customers, including pubs, restaurants and catering outlets.

“After a good start we anticipate that Booker is on course to meet expectations for the year ending March 30 2012,” said chief executive Charles Wilson.

In May, the firm posted a 25 percent rise in annual profit.