The Bakery chain announced a pre-tax loss of £13.7 million in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic compared with a £108.3million profit a year earlier. Sales dropped from £1.17billion to £811.3million as stores were forced to shut their doors. All staff in unopened stores remain on furlough.
Some Greggs stores have remained open during the lockdown for takeaways, as they are classed as an essential retailer.
However, stores in prime city centre locations and near travel sites such as train stations have seen a massive reduction in footfall and sales due to the governments stay-at-home message.
The chain permanently closed 56 branches last year and opened 84 new ones.
Greggs’ partnership with Just Eat and delivery services have helped sales during the pandemic.
The company said 9.6% of total sales in the first ten weeks of 2021 were now coming via deliveries.
However, the latest lockdown and restrictions have hit overall sales.
The company said like-for-like sales were down 28.8% in the ten weeks to March 13.
Despite the bleak financial picture, the company said it remains positive and is expected to open 100 new stores this year.
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Roger Whiteside Greggs chief executive, said: “Greggs has made a better-than-expected start to 2021 given the extent of lockdown conditions and is well placed to participate in the recovery from the pandemic.
“It has a clear strategy to extend its digital capabilities and to grow further in new locations, channels and dayparts. These opportunities will benefit all of its stakeholders in the years to come.
“In a year like no other I believe that the Covid crisis has in many ways demonstrated the strength of Greggs.
“It has shown the resilience of our business model, but most of all the strength of our people who have worked hard throughout to maintain an essential service providing takeaway food to customers unable to work from home, many of whom were themselves key workers.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our people, who can be proud of the part we played in our nation’s time of need.”
You can find your nearest Greggs store here.
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