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Gloucestershire Business News

Gloucester Quays store helps Hotel Chocolat revenues rise by £11million

New store openings - including a showpiece store in Gloucester Quays - have helped Hotel Chocolat record a significant jump in half-year revenues.

The premium chocolatier opened a branch in Gloucester Quays in September, one of nine new store openings in the country in the 26 weeks to December 29.

And that led to a 14 per cent increase in revenues, with turnover increasing from £80.719million to £91.716million.

Profits were also up, from £13.847million to £14.984million with the company, who have 125 UK locations and a thriving online platform, hailing a "strong period."

Co-founder and CEO Angus Thirlwell said: "This was another strong period for Hotel Chocolat. Our new store openings contributed three percentage points of the growth in the period, with the remaining balance coming from existing locations, digital and wholesale channels.

"While our new markets in the US and Japan are still in the early stages of development, consumer response to the brand is encouraging, sales are growing, and we believe we have a deliverable plan to achieve attractive returns.

"The Velvetiser in-home hot chocolate system achieved strong growth, with our installed Velvetiser owner base showing great loyalty and enthusiasm for our widening library of flavours, with Tasmanian Mint, Habanero Chilli, and Maple & Pecan hot chocolates becoming instant hits.

"Our VIP loyalty scheme continued to grow strongly and contributed to double digit EBITDA growth from our physical UK locations.

"Our strong growth came from a wider variety of sales channels than in previous years, which led to some initial challenges in our supply chain.

"We are now making good progress with investments and upgrades in our supply chain which will fully address these inefficiencies and increase our international and multi-channel supply capability, ensuring we continue to deliver profitable growth."

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