Restaurants

Pizza Express group earnings down by 7.7% in H1

Pizza Express saw its group earnings drop by 7.7% for H1, in spite of a small rise in sales for the 26 weeks up to 30 June.

Group EBITDA for H1 was down 7.7% to £32.4m, with total sales up 2.6% and like-for-like sales up 0.2%.

The group cited “industry-wide cost pressures” in the UK as one of the reasons behind the fall in EBITDA.

Sales during the period were boosted by an 11.5% increase in international sales, with overseas sales now contributing to 21% of overall group revenue.

Pizza Express has also opened two new sites in the UK during H1, and is focusing on upgrading existing sites, with the further development of “Future Express” programme.

It has also expanded its vegan offering and “strengthened relationships” with partners such as Deliveroo to meet consumer demand.

Jinlong Wang, CEO of Pizza Express, said: “In the first half of the year, we are pleased that we have remained resilient across all our markets despite sector-wide challenges. At a Group level, total sales grew by +2.6% and like-for-like sales were broadly flat.

“Costs across the sector continue to rise and this offset the revenue growth with Group EBITDA down (7.7)% to £32.4m. We will continue to maintain our focus on cost control, further improving productivity and efficiency, and are taking a measured approach to expanding our estate.”

Wang added: “Although we are not immune to the cautious consumer environment in the UK and Ireland, we are pleased to have delivered positive sales growth of +0.5% and a largely flat like-for-like sales performance.”

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