Shares in FTSE 250 bakery chain Greggs (LON:GRG) jumped 9.16% to 1,943p (as of 15:15 GMT) despite the firm reporting that it expects to report a £15 million pre-tax loss for 2020. Total sales for 2020 were down by 30%, but there were some signs of relative improvement during the final quarter of the year.
CEO Roger Whiteside commented: “In a year like no other I am enormously proud of the way in which our team has risen to the challenges we have faced, whilst looking after the interests of all stakeholders and providing support for communities.
“Whilst the impact of COVID-19 has been enormous, we have established working practices that allow us to provide takeaway food services under the different levels of restrictions we have experienced. The breadth of Greggs’ customer base provides ongoing demand for our services which, combined with our diverse geographical spread, has demonstrated the resilience of our business.
“With customers spending more time at home we have successfully developed our partnership with Just Eat to offer delivery services and have also seen strong sales through our longstanding partnership with Iceland, offering our products for home baking. We have resumed opening new shops where we see good opportunities, with those sites accessed by car performing particularly well.
“In light of the recent Government announcements significant uncertainties remain in the near-term. We have taken action to position Greggs to withstand further short-term shocks and are optimistic about our prospects for growth once social restrictions are lifted. I want to thank everyone who has supported Greggs through 2020.“