Profits down for Fuller's


Profits down for Fuller's
Brewer and pub group Fuller, Smith & Turner has reported a six per cent fall in pre-tax interim profits to £12 million as beer sales fell.

Financial results for the 26 weeks ended September 27th 2008 show the brewer is not immune from the effects of the downturn, as consumers stay in more often.

The pub group was upbeat about its prospects in a statement, however, highlighting a 2.3 per cent rise in like-for-like sales at its 152 managed pubs and hotels.

Michael Turner, chairman of Fuller's, said: "Our performance has been resilient in what has been a challenging period for the industry.

"The collapse of confidence in the world's banking system has meant that the outlook for the nation's economy does not look good.

"We believe we have the business model and financial strength to cope well with a downturn, can improve our relative market position and are well placed to capitalise on the opportunities that may arise."

Revenue rose by one per cent to £94.4 million and the group increased its interim dividend by two per cent to 2.85p, demonstrating "the board's confidence in our financial strength," Mr Turner added.

Fuller, Smith & Turner also has "substantial headroom" on its committed bank facilities, giving the group scope to borrow more if necessary over the coming year.

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