UK regional brewer and pub group Greene King said today (5 December) that trading was in line with expectations after posting a strong set of first-half figures.

The company, which brews brands including Greene King IPA and Old Speckled Hen, said sales from its brewing and pub businesses were up for the 30 weeks to 26 November.

Earlier, Greene King reported a 17% leap in underlying operating profit to GBP100.9m (US$199.3m) for the six months to 16 October, on the back of a 16% increase in revenues to GBP419.2m.

Chief executive Rooney Anand said the company had had a "strong" first-half. "We have benefited from our acquisition of Belhaven, which is proving a great addition to Greene King.  In the second half there will also be a full contribution from Hardys & Hansons, which is performing well, and integration is on track."

Profits from Greene King's managed pubs were up 3%, with earnings from its tenanted outlets rising by 11%. However, revenues from its beer business were flat at GBP40.9m after a fall in ale sales.