Whitbread: 'Nothing is for sale'

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The Independent Online

A disappointing trading update from Whitbread yesterday intensified pressure from the City on the leisure group to break itself up.

However, Alan Parker, the chief executive, insisted nothing was for sale. "Far from being a break-up, we are continuing to drive operational performance," he said.

Premier Travel Inn chain was the only star performer, showing like-for-like sales growth of 6.9 per cent in the 50 weeks to 16 February.

Pizza Hut and TGI Friday's each suffered a fall of 5 to 10 per cent which was offset by a good figures from the Costa coffee shop chain.

Its health club chain David Lloyd Leisure saw sales fall 0.6 per cent though membership hit a record. Mr Parker said the business was not for sale, even though its rival Esporta is keen to buy it.

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