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Shares at Enterprise Inns jump 5%

Press Release   •   Aug 09, 2013 12:14 BST

Shares in Enterprise Inns jumped five per cent yesterday after the firm forecast a rise in profits for its final financial quarter.

Britain's biggest pub landlord is hoping to reverse falling sales after takings were boosted during the heatwave.

The group, which has sold off 356 of its 6,000 pubs to cut debts of £2.7 billion, suffered a 2.7 per cent fall in like-for-like net income in the 18 weeks to August 3 - an improvement on a 4.2 per cent drop over the previous six months that was blamed on severe winter weather.

It said the most recent five-week period, coinciding with a spell of glorious sunshine, had seen income grow.

Enterprise said it had been faced with exceptionally poor winter weather in the first half of the year as well as the closure of its wine and spirits distributor Waver- ley.

In the third quarter it said it had faced tough comparisons due to the timing of Easter and the positive impact from the Euro 2012 championship and Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

"Encouragingly, the first five weeks of our final quarter have seen like-for-like net income growth," the company said.

Enterprise said it was on target to achieve underlying net income growth in its final quarter and that it expected net debt to reduce to 2.5 billion pounds by the year end.

After a cold and wet start to 2013, the hot summer has been a timely boost to the sector, lifting sales at rivals including Marston's and Fuller, Smith & Turner.

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