(Adds details, share movement)
March 9 Domino's Pizza Group PLC,
Britain's biggest pizza delivery firm, reported
lower-than-expected like-for-like sales in the UK for the first
nine weeks of 2017, sending its shares down more than 14
Sales at its stores open for about 2 years rose 1.5 percent
during the period, but were well below the 10.5 percent increase
it posted in the same period a year ago.
Higher competition from Pizza Hut, market softness and an
unsuccessful "Winter Survival" promotion campaign hurt the
like-for-like sales, analysts said.
Brokerage Peel Hunt had forecast like-for-like sales to rise
3 percent, while N+1 Singer had estimated a 3.5 percent
However, the company said its full-year profit rose 17.1
percent, driven by a surge in online and mobile orders.
Domino's also said on Thursday that it bought Norwegian
pizza chain Dolly Dimple's from Norges Gruppen for an enterprise
value of 4 million pounds ($4.9 million) through its associate
Pizza Pizza Norway.
Domino's plans to integrate the Dolly Dimple's business into
their operations in Norway, which currently has 12 operating
stores. The combined operation will have around 50 stores by the
end of the year, Domino's said.
The company has been focusing on sales through online
channels to compete better with food delivery company Just Eat
, which said on Tuesday that it expected another year of
The company has managed to stay ahead of competition by
effectively using technologies such as digital wallets and apps
for smartphones and smartwatches that help customers place and
pay for orders quickly.
Domino's said U.K. online system sales accounted for 72
percent of all delivered sales, up from 67 percent in 2015.
Mobile sales were 73 percent of online system sales.
The company said it expected to open around 80 new stores in
the UK and invest in additional supply chain centres in 2017.
The group, which has most of its stores in the UK but also
operates in Ireland, Switzerland and Germany, said underlying
pretax profit rose to 85.7 million pounds in the 52 weeks ended
Dec. 25 from 73.2 million pounds a year earlier.
Sales at UK stores open for about 2 years rose 7.5 percent
in the period.
The company, which is a master franchisee of U.S. group
Domino's Pizza Inc, said system sales rose 14.5 percent
to 1 billion pounds.
Last week, Domino's Pizza Inc, the parent group of Domino's
in the U.S., reported a better-than-expected rise in revenue for
the fourth quarter.
Shares in the company were down 11 percent at 349 pence at
0934 GMT, after touching a 3-1/2-month low earlier.
($1 = 0.8225 pounds)
(Reporting by Rahul B and Arathy S Nair in Bengaluru; Editing
by Sunil Nair and Gopakumar Warrier)