Whitbread froths up thanks to fury over Starbucks tax
Tuesday 11 December 2012
Whitbread-owned Costa Coffee saw its sales soar 25.5 per cent in the 13 weeks to the end of November as its United States rival Starbucks flew into controversy over its failure to pay UK corporation tax.
Perhaps even more impressive was the 7.1 per cent rise in sales from branches and franchises which have been open at least 12 months. That is up from 5.7 per cent in the second quarter.
Chief executive Andy Harrison said: "We cannot disentangle Starbucks from all the things that we are doing ourselves, like a really good TV advertising campaign, improved food range and some really good Christmas offerings." But he admitted: "It certainly hasn't harmed us. What we believe is that people are voting with their taste buds."
When prompted, Mr Harrison couldn't avoid another dig at his US-based rival. He said: "Last year Costa paid corporation tax at 27 per cent which amounted to £17m. I am not making profit forecasts for the next two years but I am pretty certain we will continue paying tax at that rate. It's no wonder Costa is the taxman's favourite coffee chain."
Whitbread isn't just coffee and there was a 12.6 per cent growth in sales at Premier Inns. This reflects rapid expansion within the M25 and particularly London, where it now has 8,000 rooms. That has taken the capital's share of all Premier rooms in the UK up from 15 per cent to just over 20 per cent in one year. Some of that was Olympics driven but the demand remains strong with occupancy today running at or above 90 per cent.
Including the pubs and restaurants, third-quarter sales across the group were 14.4 per cent ahead of last year.
- 1 Malaysian cyclist could face disciplinary action after 'Save Gaza' gloves protest
- 2 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 3 McDonald’s removes chicken nuggets from the menu in Hong Kong amid major food scare
- 4 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
- 5 Satellite full of sexually experimental geckos adrift in space, Russia loses control of mission
Israel-Gaza conflict: Israeli targeting policy under scrutiny after shellfire hits a mother and child, a school full of refugees and a doctor’s home
Iraq crisis: Isis orders Mosul shop keepers to cover mannequins
Comic Con 2014 attendees
Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
McDonald’s removes chicken nuggets from the menu in Hong Kong amid major food scare
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
iJobs Money & Business
£600 - £650 per day: Orgtel: Conduct Risk Liaison Manager - Banking - London -...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Comission: SThree: SThree, International Recruitme...
£280 - £300 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Test Analyst, Edinburgh, Credit Ris...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000: SThree: SThree Group have been well e...