Comptoir scales back restaurant opening schedule

Comptoir Group’s revenues rose by 21% to £21.5m in the year to the end of December but it has decided to reduce its opening schedule for 2018 to four restaurants following lower-than-expected trading at the start of this year.

Gross profit increased 21% to £15.7m and adjusted EBITDA rose by 7% to £2.7m but adjusted pre-tax profit was 4% lower at £1.6m and the group posted an IFRS loss before tax of £1.0m against a £1.3m profit last time.

The group said it ended the year with 22 restaurants and 2 franchise operations, ahead of expectations, and was currently trading from 23 restaurants.

Chairman Richard Kleiner said: Due to the group’s opening programme being ahead of the schedule anticipated at the time of IPO, the group expects to only open a further three restaurants during the current year.

“2017 will therefore be focused on bedding in new openings, promoting the Comptoir brand to consumers in new locations and delivering on anticipated returns.

“During the first quarter of 2017 we have experienced the UK consumer being cautious.

“Trading in January and February, traditionally the company’s quietest months, was below expectations, however, we saw improved trading in March.

“The group expects further positive trading in April (which includes Easter) and into the summer months.

“The board has made the decision to reduce its opening schedule for 2018 to 4 restaurants in 2018 (4 in 2017), which will impact the financial performance in 2018.

“The board will increase the numbers of openings ahead of this revised 2018 target if suitably attractive locations become available and dependent on market conditions.”

At 8:09am: (LON:COM) Comland Commercial Plc share price was -2p at 49p

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