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Greggs posts 19% fall in profits

Greggs profits fell by 19.1% during 2013 and the bakery chain said it expects "challenging market conditions" to continue during 2014.

Annual results showed a rise in total sales but a fall in profits Credit: PA

The firm, which is based in Newcastle, posted a drop in like-for-like sales of 0.8%, although total sales rose by 3.8%.

The company announced last year that it would change strategy, focusing on food-to-go units rather than cafes, and refitting hundreds of its stores.

Today in its annual results, the firm said it was "making good progress" with that plan.


Greggs warns profits for whole year could be lower than first forecast

One of the North East's biggest businesses have announced a shock profits warning today, causing a marked drop in its share value - and raising more fears about the pace of the country's economic recovery.

Greggs the Bakers blames bad weather on a drop in like-for- like sales for the first four months of the year.

The company has warned it now expects profits for the whole year to be lower than first forecast.

Greggs reports lower than expected profits

The Newcastle-based sandwich chain is blaming the bleak winter for a drop in sales. Credit: Tim Ireland/Press Association Images

Greggs the Baker has reported much lower profits than expected - as a result, the company's share-price took a nose-dive this morning.

The Newcastle-based sandwich chain is blaming the bleak winter for a 4.4 per cent drop in sales in the last 17 weeks.

It has triggered a fall of more than seven per cent in the company's share price.

A spokesman says they do not expect any significant improvements in the short-term.

Greggs founder's son in sex quiz

The son of the man who founded baking giant Greggs has been arrested in Newcastle upon Tyne on suspicion of a historic sexual offence.

71-year-old Colin Gregg, who for more than thirty years was a non-executive director of the North East business, was taken in for questioning on Saturday.

The police, who raided his home in Gosforth, say that he has now been released on bail.

Mr Gregg, son of founder Jack Gregg, is also the former headmaster of King's School in Tynemouth and set up the North East Children's Cancer Run in the 1980s.

He reportedly has shares in the bakery business worth around £5.5 million.

"A 71-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of sexual assault and has been released on police bail."

– Northumbria Police spokesperson

"Colin Gregg has no involvement with Greggs plc.

He retired as a non-executive director in May 2001.

It would therefore be wholly inappropriate for us to comment on this matter."

– Spokesman for Greggs plc


Greggs boss urges VAT rethink

Greggs Chief Executive Ken McMeikan has urged Treasury ministers to rethink the planned VAT rise their products.

In his budget, Chancellor George Osborne proposed introducing a 20% tax rate on hot takeaway foods.

Mr McMeikan says Greggs' pasties, pies and sausage rolls should not be subject to VAT because the customer cannot be guaranteed a hot product.