Marston's lifts FY statutory pretax profit, revenue

Marston's has improved its FY statutory pretax profit by 158% to £80.8m, on revenue up 7% to £937.3m.

Final dividend was up 4.4% to 4.7p a share.

CEO Ralph Findlay said the company had delivered another year of good growth across the business, with the outstanding performance of the beer company particularly encouraging.

"Trading has been solid in the first few weeks of the new financial year and we have seen no discernible change to the trends experienced in 2016.

"The majority of our major product cost lines are contracted for 2017 and well into 2018.

"We have a high quality pub and beer business which is displaying positive momentum and is consistently outperforming the market.

"We believe that, despite some continuing market headwinds, our expansion plans for new pub-restaurants, lodges and Revere bars will further enhance our ability to deliver attractive returns."

WELL POSITIONED FOR GROWTH IN 2017

- Encouraging start to new financial year

- Target to open at least 20 new-build pub-restaurants in the coming year, including 3 Revere bars and 5-10 lodges, weighted towards the second half

- Continued focus on premium and craft beer to drive growth, energized branding of Marston's beer brands and development of DE14 craft micro-brewery .