Youngs confident on year ahead

Young's confident on year ahead

Brewer and pub group Young & Co's Brewery has pronounced itself pleased with first quarter trading in a difficult UK market.

Sales at the group's managed pubs rose by 2% for the three months to the end of June, compared to the same period of last year, Young's said yesterday (13 July).

"We have made a good start to the current year with trading in line with the board's expectations," said chairman Christopher Sandland at the company's annual general meeting.

"Whilst we remain watchful of the economic outlook, we believe that we are well-placed to manage any further challenges that may emerge and we remain confident about our prospects for this financial year," he said.

Between 30 and 35 pubs are closing down every week in the UK, according to the latest British Beer and Pub Association figures.

Last month, Young's said that it was cautious on the year ahead amid the risk that Government austerity measures could "derail consumers' fragile confidence".

The firm's Wells & Young's brewing venture increased like-for-like profits by 3.6% to GBP2m for the year to the end of March. The division has recently launched Mongoose lager as a rival to Molson Coors' Cobra.