Bakery chain PAUL claims to be defying the gloom cited by some of its high street competitors after reporting a 9.5% increase in sales during the first half of the year.
The growth comes on the back of a solid 12 months for the 37-strong chain, with turnover for 2018 up 7% year-on-year to £38m. Profit figures were not disclosed and aren’t yet available on Companies House.
The French bakery and café brand said online sales had increased 44% over the past year, while the launch of a mobile payment and loyalty app means that customers can now collect reward points and receive tailored offers through their phones.
Two new concept stores, at St Pancras Station and Tottenham Court Road, have opened focusing on quick service with a new hot and cold food range. Its Canary Wharf branch, meanwhile, has relocated to a larger unit, selling a wider range of baked goods.
The brand’s catering and delivery range has been further developed resulting in a partnership with City Pantry to allow PAUL to offer a greater platter selection for meetings
As part of the ‘PAUL Cares Policy’, PAUL increased its reusable cup benefit, from a 25p to a 50p customer discount, as well as removing all plastic straws from the business.
It has also saved over 31,000 meals from landfill through its partnership with Too Good To Go, the app that helps to reduce food waste.
Susanne Sauerland, finance director at PAUL UK, said: “This is a solid performance by PAUL in the light of continued uncertainty within the sector. Our results in the second half of 2018 and the first half of 2019 are showing significant increases in like-for-like turnover, primarily due to new product development, improved technology/online sales and, of course, the commitment, passion and capabilities of our team.”