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Mitchells and Butlers losses narrow to £42m as sales recover

Mitchells and Butlers said it has demonstrated ‘strong recovery’ on reopening as its second half sales almost doubled to £846m from £436m in H2 FY 2020.

Mitchells and Butlers (M&B) has reported a pre-tax loss of £42m for-the 52 weeks ending 25 September 2021, compared with £123m a year earlier, as its sales recovery starts to take hold.

M&B said it had returned to profitability in recent months and its like-for-like sales were 2.7% higher than pre-Covid levels during the past eight weeks.

Additionally, the company’s operating profit increased tenfold from £8m to £81m.

Meanwhile, M&B’s total revenue fell by 21% to £1.06bn from £1.47bn in FY20. However, M&B said it has demonstrated “strong recovery” on reopening as its second half sales almost doubled to £846m from £436m in H2 FY 2020.

In addition, M&B reportedly saw a strengthened balance sheet through a £351m equity raise and refinanced debt arrangements.

Phil Urban, M&B chief executive, said: “Despite the inevitable challenges faced by our business over the past year we are now well positioned to regain the momentum previously built as we come out of the pandemic.

“The trading environment remains challenging and cost headwinds continue to put pressure on the sector. However, we have strengthened our balance sheet and returned to profitability and cash generation, allowing us to resume our capital plan and Ignite programme which will deliver sales and efficiency improvements.”

He added: “Demand for our well-loved brands has been demonstrated by an encouraging return to sustained like-for-like sales growth since restrictions have been lifted, and we are confident in our ability to continue our recovery as a market leading operator.”

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