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Morning Briefing for pub, restaurant and food wervice operators

Tue 23rd Oct 2012 - Breaking News
Cote Ebitda hits £10m as sales jump to just under £50m: Cote Restaurants, the highly rated French brasserie chain owned by Richard Caring that is rumoured to be eyeing sale options, has reported turnover increased by 38.7 per cent to £49.3m in the year to 29 July 2012. Ebitda increased £3.3m to £10m, an increase of 46.6 per cent – with Ebitda as a percentage of turnover increasing from 19.2 per cent to 20.3 per cent. Pre-tax profit jumped to £6,916,508 from £3,971,680 the year before. The company operated 32 restaurants at its year-end with a “good pipeline” of sites. A further site has been opened since its accounts were signed with two under construction. The company stated: “During the period an increase in alcohol duties were not passed on to customers in line with the company’s value-for-money policy. However, this increased cost was partly mitigated by the negotiation of a new key beverage supply contract.” The company’s current facility with the Bank of Scotland is due to expire in April 2013. It stated: “It is the directors belief that this will be successfully renegotiated given the company’s strong financial results, continued expansion and the company’s relatively low bank debt EBITDA ratio of 1.5 times.” On Sunday, The Sunday Telegraph repeated a story about the possible sale of Cote. Propel Morning Briefing reported in August that Caring had appointed Hawkpoint to explore a possible sale. The Sunday Telegraph reported: “Caring could sell a stake to a new investor who would help bankroll expansion or sell outright.” The last filed accounts show the company owed Caring £7,545,000, which he provided the company as an unsecured, non-interest bearing loan – it has bank debts of £13.29m. The company is owed £6,953,217 by sister company Bills Stores which demerged in June 2010 – it incurred an exceptional cost of £150,000 as a result of the demerger. Industry experts believe the company is to be worth between £90m and £110m. Cote was ranked seventh in the Sunday Times Fast Track 100 in December 2011 and scored second highest out of 50 UK brands in the CPL Training Customer Satisfaction Index conducted by Propel Info at the end of the summer. 
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