Wednesday, October 3, 2012

News: Crawshaws invests to beat "pasty tax"


Crawshaw, the Rotherham-based meat-focused retailer, has posted their financial results for the six months to July 31 and has seen like for like sales increase by 4%.

The Bradmarsh Business Park company saw total sales for the first half decrease slightly to £9.3m compared to £9.4m in the same period last year. This was as a result of the closure of their Doncaster market site and a mobile unit.

The company has also invested in marketing related activities and certain restructuring costs and the benefits of this investment are becoming apparent in the second half. In the eight weeks since July 31, like for like sales were up 7%.

In May, Richard Rose, chairman of Crawshaw, stated that his confidence in recent sales growth had been undermined by the Chancellor's decision to propose the introduction of VAT on hot food from October.

Following a u-turn by the government, retailers will be able to sell hot products "on the cool", straight out of the oven and avoid the 20% VAT charge and Crawshaw invested in equipment, additional staff and staff training to prepare for the changes.

Crawshaw's 20 outlets will be cooking smaller batches of roast chickens and cooked meat joints much more often and letting them cool naturally for short periods so they will be freshly cooked for customers.

Gross profit remained level at £4.1m but margins increased to 46%. EBITDA (earnings before tax) increased to £296k for the six months from £278k in the first half of 2011.

Crawshaw website

Images: Crawshaw


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