Pub operator Enterprise posts 62% rise in fiscal H1 pretax profit

British pub operator Enterprise Inns Plc on Tuesday reported an impressive year-on-year increase of 62 per cent in pretax profit for the first six months of its financial year and claimed that it expected to achieve its full-year growth target.

Enterprise said it pocketed pretax profit of £47 million (nearly $57.5M) on revenue of £308 million during the six months to March 31. In the corresponding six-month period of the previous year, the pub company had generated a pretax profit of £29 million on revenue of £312 million.

The company's net profit jumped from £25 million to £37 million, thanks to lower exceptional property charges.

Announcing the results, Chief Executive Officer Simon Townsend said, "London and the South-East were particularly strong but we are also seeing growth across the regions. I am confident that through our activities to support publicans to grow their businesses we will achieve our target of like-for-like net income growth for the full financial year."

The company also managed to bring its total net debt down to £2.5 billion as on March 31 this year, as compared with £2.7 billion a year ago. The company has plans to cut it further using its strong operational cash flows.

Mr. Townsend said that the company's board believed that the best use of cash available to the company was to continue to decrease debt to attain a transfer of value to shareholders.

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