Domino’s sales top forecasts

THE country’s biggest pizza delivery firm Domino’s Pizza yesterday said it expected its 2010 pre-tax profit to beat market forecasts following a strong finish to the year, sending its shares to an all-time high.

Domino’s, which operates the British and Irish franchises of the global delivery brand, has excelled through challenging economic conditions as cash-strapped customers opt to stay in and order takeaways rather than eating out.

Domino’s, which opened 57 new stores over the year and has 665 outlets, said yesterday sales at shops open more than a year grew by 10.3 per cent in the 13 weeks to 26 December.

“We have again finished the year with a like-for-like sales performance that is ahead of expectations and, together with the improvements in our operational gearing, the company will deliver 2010 profits ahead of current City expectations,” said Domino’s chief executive Chris Moore.

The strong performance came despite heavy snowfall across Britain throughout December.

Domino’s said total sales increased by 17.8 per cent in the fourth quarter to £132.5m. For the year as a whole, they were up 19.2 per cent to £485.3m

iPhone lovers add £1m to pizza firm’s top line

HUNGRY pizza fans bought £1m of Domino’s food through their iPhones in the three months to the end of December, writes Lottie Mungavin.

In total, the company’s e-commerce business – which includes orders made online and through its iPhone app – accounted for over a third of pizza sales in the fourth quarter.

Buoyed by the success of its iPhone app, Domino’s is working on a similar app for Android, the mobile phone operating system developed by web giant Google.

Domino’s is also a convert to the power of so-called “social marketing”, where firms use social networks like Facebook and Twitter to promote their products.

It has 21,000 followers on Twitter, as well as 109,000 fans and 1.5m “likes” on Facebook. It keeps their attention by offering occasional online-only discounts.

The iPhone app accounts for just four per cent of online sales, but that is from an incredibly low base – the firm only launched the app in October 2009.