Blue Diamond Garden Centres have published their Report and Accounts for 2019 with headline numbers of turnover up 42% to £181.6m and profits before tax up by £3.5m to £14.4m.
In his managing Directors Report, Alan Roper explains: "Within this figure restaurant sales grew from £22.6m to £34.4m in 2019. Restaurant sales grew 7% on a like-for-like basis. Due to acquisitions restaurant sales have more than doubled over the past two years from £16m in 2017 to £34.4m in 2019.
"In September 2019 we acquired a further seven Wyevale sites, which generated £5.1m sales in the last quarter. These sites, which historically generated £18.5m of turnover, have the potential to reach sales of £30m over the next five years."
After the turmoil of the COVID-19 crisis Simon Burke, Chairman of Blue Diamond reported: "It is difficult to provide commentary on our prospects without engaging in guesswork. Many factors, including the future of restaurants, the duration of social distancing measures, the overall state of the economy, and our old acquaintance the outcome of the Brexit process, are all factors which will affect our business but which are impossible to predict.
"However, I do expect the coming months to be challenging for us. We will have much work to do to get the business back on a firm footing, from which it can resume its growth story. Debt reduction and a strong capital base will be our priority, and so cash conservation will be a key theme for some time to come.
"What we have seen, however, is the resilience of the Blue Diamond business in the face of a very severe shock, its ability to draw customers even in a difficult environment, and the energy and enterprise of the team to respond creatively to the challenges they have faced.
"These factors give me confidence that we will weather whatever lies in store for us, and do what it takes to ensure that Blue Diamond will come out the other end strong and prosperous once more."
Alan adds: "We have a pipeline of growth projects stretching over a 3- to 4-year period, which will generate a further £89m turnover. The sixteen former Wyevale sites will generate a further £57m turnover so there is enough existing realisable opportunity for the Group to reach £326m over the years to come.
"Success is delivered by being strategically ahead of your competitors and ensuring that you position yourself through qualitative points of difference to be the first and most loyal choice of your customer. Blue Diamond operates to that standard. I thank my team for choosing to be a part of this successful journey and to whom we owe our success."
Read the full report using this link