Frankie & Benny’s banking on cinema blockbusters

Franke and Benny's. Picture: Lisa McPhillips
Franke and Benny's. Picture: Lisa McPhillips
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THE owner of restaurant chains Frankie & Benny’s and Garfunkel’s expects to open up to 50 additional outlets this year after posting record annual profits.

The Restaurant Group, which operates about 470 restaurants and pubs, said pre-tax profits lifted 7.4 per cent to £78.1 million in the year to 28 December, after it opened 40 restaurants and created 1,300 jobs.

The business, which also includes Chiquito and Coast to Coast, grew sales 10 per cent to £635m as it added a new chicken section at its Frankie & Benny’s outlets. It said the new year had started well, with like-for-like sales up 2.5 per cent.

The firm is upbeat about prospects for this year as wages have outstripped inflation for the first time in a number of years.

It said with about half of its sites in leisure parks, it stood to benefit from a much stronger cinema film release schedule than has been the case in the past two years. Some of the films slated for UK cinema release over the next two years include Jurassic World, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

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