Total sales at Greggs increased by 13.5% in its full year results, amid a “phenomenal” year of “strong sales”.
Company-managed shops saw like-for-like sales increase by 9.2% for the year ended 28 December 2019, while quarterly like-for-like sales increased by 8.7%.
The bakery chain now expects its full year underlying profit before tax to be slightly higher than previous expectations, citing “strong demand” and increased customer visits as the drive behind its growth.
Amid its “exceptional” year, Greggs also announced that all employees will share in a one-off payment of £7m “in recognition of their crucial contribution to business success”. The bonus will be paid at the end of January.
Greggs also opened 138 new stores in 2019, growing its estate to 2,050 shops. In the year ahead, it expects some 100 net shop openings.
Chief executive Roger Whiteside said: “We delivered a strong finish to what has been an exceptional year for Greggs. The major investments we have made in recent years to make Greggs an attractive choice in the food-on-the-go market are delivering.
“Consumers are responding very positively and we have seen increasing visits from both new and existing customers.”
He added: “Our record financial performance in 2019 has enabled us to enhance returns to shareholders. I am delighted to announce that we will also be making a special additional payment to all of our colleagues across the business who have worked so hard to deliver this success in what has been a phenomenal year.
“Looking to the year ahead, we face strong sales comparatives and cost inflation headwinds present a challenge.
“However, with strong momentum in the business we see further growth opportunities across a number of channels as we invest in new ways to make Greggs more accessible and convenient for customers.”