Pub giant JD Wetherspoon has reported record earnings and remains confident that a Brexit deal will have no significant impact on its UK buisness.
Pre-tax profits in the year to the end of July grew from £66m to £77m, with revenues up 4% from last year’s £1.59bn, totalling £1.66bn.
Like-for-like sales also saw a healthy upturn with an increase of 4% compared to 3.4 % at the same point in 2016.
While the group published its successful financial figures, group chairman, Tim Martin, used the opportunity to reaffirm his position as a pro-Brexit advocate.
Martin said: “It is my view that the main risk from the current Brexit negotiations is not to Wetherspoon, but to our excellent EU suppliers – and to EU economies.
“As a result of their current posturing and threats, EU negotiators are inevitably encouraging importers like Wetherspoon to look elsewhere for supplies. This process is unlikely to have adverse effects on the UK economy, as companies will be able to switch to suppliers representing the 93% of the world’s population which is not in the EU, but this evolution will eventually be highly damaging to the economy of the EU.
“Wetherspoon is extremely confident that it can switch from EU suppliers, if required, although we would be very reluctant to initiate such actions.”
At the beginning of the year JD Wetherspoon revealed a 0.7% rise in total sales, with like-for like sales increasing by 3.2% for the three months to January 2017, and predicted its operating margin for the half year ending 22 January 2017 to be around 8.0%, 1.7% higher than the same period last year.