Hotel Chocolat gorges on bumper profits haul

Financial By Garry Polmateer |

 

Profits at Hotel Chocolat doubled last year after the retailer launched “chocolate lock-ins” and catered to more health-conscious consumers.

The group saw pre-tax profits rise 100% to £11.2 million in the year to July, while revenue rose 12% to £105.2 million.

Hotel Chocolat pointed to the success of “experiences”, one of which includes so called “chocolate lock-ins”, where small groups of ticketed customers are allowed into stores after closing time for “tutored tasting” and “nocturnal private shopping”.

It also said its “hedonistic” chocolate is made with “more cocoa, less sugar”, which is helping meet demand for healthier treats.

Co-founder and chief executive Angus Thirlwell said: “The Hotel Chocolat brand has continued to strengthen and we have made excellent progress with our three strategic priorities of investing further in our British chocolate manufacturing operations, growing our store estate and developing our digital offering.

“Given the encouraging performance of our retail and internet channels, along with the pipeline of opportunities ahead of us, we are confident of further growth.”

Mr Thirlwell also lauded the growth of Hotel Chocolat’s new “shop+cafe” format and said this Christmas will see the group release its biggest seasonal offering.

Hotel Chocolat opened 12 new stores in the period, taking its total to 94, and has 15 “shop+cafe” stores.


Hotel Chocolat/PA Wire

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