Tasty sales for Restaurant Group as snow-bound holidaymakers feast at airports

Snow-bound holidaymakers stranded at The Restaurant Group's 50 airport concessions have helped boost sales at the chain's Garfunkel's, Frankie & Benny's and Chiquito eateries.

Chief executive Andrew Page, who posted better-than-expected annual profits - up 2 per cent to £48million - said underlying sales over the first nine weeks of 2010 were up 6 per cent.

During 2009 The Restaurant Group opened five new airport sites - four at Aberdeen Airport and one at Manchester Airport - and it redeveloped a site at Heathrow's Terminal 4.

Frankie & Benny's New York Italian Restaurant & Bar at Gatwick Airport

Frankie & Benny's at Gatwick Airport

Recent trading at its airports business was buoyed by the cold snap. The division had suffered from a 6 per cent decline in revenues in the 12 months to December 27 due to 'significant declines' in passenger numbers.

Annual sales at the group, which also owns 42 Brunning & Price pub restaurants, rose from £416million to £435million. 


The shares fell 10p to 205p, despite a rise in the full-year dividend from 7.70p to 8p-a-share.

The firm said sales also benefited from cinema-goers flocking to see James Cameron's Avatar.

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