Business Irish

Sunday 25 February 2018

Pizza chain earns a decent crust as profits rocket

Profits rise by 40pc as directors at the Milano chain say they will seek opportunities for more restaurants in the market
Profits rise by 40pc as directors at the Milano chain say they will seek opportunities for more restaurants in the market

Gordon Deegan

There is lots of dough in dough balls and pizzas for the Milano chain of restaurants as profits last year rocketed by 40pc to €2.8m last year.

Revenues at the firm that operates the Milano brand in Ireland, Agenbite, increased by 14.5pc to €18.1m.

A subsidiary of the UK-based Pizza Express, Milano opened its first outlet in Ireland on Dublin's Dawson Street in 1995. It has expanded to operate restaurants at Temple Bar, the IFSC, Dundrum and Grand Canal Harbour in Dublin along with outlets in Cork, Galway and Limerick.

More recently, Milano has opened outlets at Ranelagh and Haddington Rd in Dublin along with ones at Ennis and Killarney.

Underlining the group's recent expansion, numbers employed by the group last year increased from 300 to 375.

The increase in pre-tax profits and revenues returns the company to growth as the group sustained a drop in profits and revenues in 2013.

The directors' report states that the casual dining market is highly competitive and the company will seek new opportunities to open new restaurants while continuing to operate effectively and efficiently.

The directors state that the performance of the company during 2014 "produced encouraging results".

The report states: "The company implemented various successful initiatives in line with its strategy to improve like for like (LFL) performance and its current year trading has also been assisted by the improving macro-economic environment in the market."

It adds that "sales growth was primarily achieved through a LFL sales growth".

The accounts show that the company's accumulated profits at the end of June last stood at €26.7m that included its cash jumping from €974,000 to €2.18m. Staff costs rose by 15pc to €7m.

The accounts show after paying tax of €368,000 the after-tax profits were €2.43m.

The profit last year takes account of non-cash depreciation costs of €764,000. The amount the firm paid in operating leases last year stood at €2.27m.

In June of last year, the owner of Milano, Pizza Express, was sold to Chinese private equity firm, Hony Capital for £900m.

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