perking up: Coffee livens Whitbread performance

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Whitbread said its performance has been boosted by the success of its Costa coffee chain, where third quarter sales were up 4.9 per cent.

Costa has added 246 new net stores including 133 in the UK and 54 in China, bringing the total number to 2,773.

Total sales at the coffee chain for the first three quarters were £882m, up nearly a fifth on last year.

While Whitbread is planning to expand Costa, it has put the brakes on at Premier Inn where it will open 500 fewer rooms than expected in the current financial year.

Sales at Premier grew by 5.4 per cent.

Gareth Harris of RSM Restructuring Advisory LLP

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