Premier Food has raised its full-year profit outlook, saying it expects a higher demand for its brands – which include Mr Kipling, Bisto, and Oxo – due to fresh lockdown restrictions on eating out.
The group reported a 35.5 per cent increase in pre-tax profit to £50.5m for the six months to 26 September, as more people cooked at home amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Premier Foods reported a 15 per cent increase in group revenue for the period to £421.5m, while revenue on its branded goods increased 18.6 per cent to £367.3m.
The company said it expects continued revenue growth in the second half, driven by new products, strong commercial plans and increased television marketing, along with higher demand due to the closure of restaurants and pubs for four weeks across England.
“In the first half of the year, demand for our branded product ranges has been exceptional, particularly in our grocery businesses which have helped deliver strong profit growth,” said chief executive Alex Whitehouse.
Whitehouse said that the company “now expect[s] to see an increase in demand for our brands due to the impact of recently increased government restrictions on eating out,” adding: “the longevity of this increased demand is likely to be linked to the duration of these new measures”.
Premier Foods – whose Bisto, Batchelors, Oxo, Ambrosia, Sharwood’s, McDougall’s and Nissin brands all reported double-digit revenue growth for the first half – said it would be launching new products in this range to cash in on the demand.