Greggs hopes special offers will reverse its slowing sales

 
Kasmira Jefford
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GREGGS said it has introduced extra promotions and discounts in its worst performing regions to entice cash-strapped customers, as sales slowed in the first weeks of the year.

Chief executive Ken McMeikan said the 1.8 per cent fall in like for like sales in the first 10 weeks of 2012 reflected a four per cent drop in the number of shoppers on the high street.

While trading in London remained positive, McMeikan said the company was offering deals like two sausage rolls for £1 in Scotland, the north east, and the Midlands to boost trade.

He was speaking as the group revealed a 1.1 per cent rise in pre-tax profits to £53.1m in 2011.

Sales rose eight per cent to £701m as meal deals and breakfast offers proved popular with customers and it sold a record 17.3m cups of coffee.

McMeikan said “despite tough market conditions” the group was forging ahead with 90 new store openings this year, adding that the closure of several high street retailers was in some cases allowing the group to get cheaper deals in new locations.