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Restaurant Group lifts profit by a third

Restaurant and pub operator Restaurant Group reported a sharp increase in full year earnings, lifted its dividend payment and said its new financial year had started well.

Restaurant and pub operator Restaurant Group reported a sharp increase in full year earnings, lifted its dividend payment and said its new financial year had started well.

The Frankie & Benny's, Chiquito and Garfunkel's operator said revenue increased 9% to £533m, with like-for-like sales up 4.5% in the 52 weeks ended December 30th 2012.

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Adjusted profit before tax increased 7% to £64.6m while statutory pre-tax profit rose 33% to £64.6m.

Restaurant Group said current trading remained strong, with total sales up 14% and like-for-like sales at 6.5% in the eight weeks to February 24th 2013.

Andrew Page, Chief Executive, said: "Last year, 28 new restaurants were opened; these are trading well and are set to deliver excellent returns."

"2013 has started well, with like-for-like sales 6.5% ahead, and the TRG team is focused on building further on this to secure another year of profitable progress."

The group said net debt was further reduced by £5.6m to £36m.

A full year dividend of 11.8p per share has been proposed, up 12% from last time.

CJ

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