Whitbread Jumps After Quarterly Sales Beat Analysts’ Estimates

Whitbread Plc rose to the highest in more than 22 years after the owner of Premier Inn budget hotels and Costa Coffee shops reported sales that beat analysts’ estimates.

The shares climbed as much 5.7 percent in London trading. Like-for-like sales at Premier Inn rose 8.3 percent in the 11 weeks to Feb. 13, the Dunstable, England-based company said today in a statement. Analysts expected an increase of 5 percent, the median estimate of nine analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

Whitbread is benefiting from an economic recovery led by London, which is helping to lift revenue at the company’s hotel and coffee-shop businesses. Costa’s sales also exceeded estimates and Whitbread said it’s on course to report full-year results “towards the top end” of expectations.

London’s economy is “very strong,” Chief Executive Officer Andrew Harrison said by phone. “Outside of London it’s a much more mixed picture.”

The shares were up 3.8 percent to 4,351 pence at 9:45 a.m., the highest since January 1992. That brought the gain for the past six months to 39 percent.

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