Domino's Pizza may give investors an extra helping once new factory opens

The boss of Domino’s Pizza believes the company could return even more cash to investors beyond the ?50m pledged this year after beating profit expectations.
Chief executive David Wild said once its new production facility in Warrington had been completed in the coming months, the demands on the cash it generates would fall.
Domino’s has already bought back ?18m worth of shares in 2018 out of a committed ?50m but Mr Wild suggested once the company “gets over the hump of capital expenditure in Warrington”, it could find more money for investors.
Mr Wild's comments came as the company beat analysts’ expectations for profits, leading to an 8pc early surge in its shares to 345p.
Although pre-tax profits fell to ?81.2m from ?82.5m in 2016 due to ?15m in costs partly linked to acquisitions, investors cheered the results, which saw the company’s revenues rise nearly a third to ?474m.
Domino’s UK pizza sales through its franchisees broke through the ?1bn-mark for the first time in 2017 after opening a record 95 stores in the year, bringing it to 1,045 outlets. The site in Warrington is being constructed to help the company hit its goal of 1,600 UK locations.
The company's UK like-for-like sales growth slowed to 4.8pc compared to 9.8pc the year before, but Mr Wild said this had been expected after an exceptional few years.
“The long-term trend has been roughly 5pc to 7pc over the past 15 years but we had three remarkable years [2014, 2015, 2016], which we always made clear could not carry on,” he said.
The chief executive said the company would open 65 to 75 new stores in the UK in 2018, 10 of which would be in London. Domino’s recently bought a 75pc stake in a joint venture with one of its London franchisees in a bid to spur growth in the capital.
Mr Wild said the company’s 32 years of experience would see it through the increasingly competitive environment in the delivered food market.
Domino's Pizza may give investors an extra helping once new factory opens

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“Many brands have come to the market to offer delivery and many have pulled out,” Mr Wild said.
“The more the market grows, the more it will attract competition but because we control the end-to-end experience, our customers know what to expect.”
Elsewhere, Mr Wild said GPS technology, which allows stores to track delivery drivers, had been put into nearly 500 stores and should be in all by the end of 2018. He said the technology had improved the productivity of its delivery drivers and helped stores better plan deliveries.
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