January 8, 2013 / 7:51 AM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 1-Online demand boosts Domino's Pizza UK sales

* Q4 UK lfl sales up 5.0 pct (2011: 4.2 pct

* Ireland lfl sales down 3.8 pct (2011: down 0.9 pct

* E-commerce sales in UK and Ireland up 56.6 pct in Q4 to 84.1 mln stg

* UK lfl sales for the year up 5.0 pct

* Says will deliver FY 2012 profits in line with expectations

LONDON, Jan 8 (Reuters) - Britain’s biggest pizza delivery firm Domino’s Pizza said it would meet year profit expectations after strong online and mobile demand helped boost fourth quarter sales.

Domino‘s, which operates the British and Irish franchises of the global delivery brand, said on Tuesday UK sales at its 612 stores open more than a year were up 5.0 percent in the 14 weeks to Dec. 30, up from 4.2 percent in 557 stores in 2011.

Underlying sales at its 47 stores in Ireland fell by 3.8 percent in the period, down from 0.9 percent a year ago.

With a range of promotions and a popular online ordering service Domino’s has chimed well with cash-strapped consumers looking to stay in rather than enjoy more expensive nights out. Total e-commerce sales for the period in the UK and Ireland rose by 56.6 percent to 84.1 million pounds ($135.26 million), it said.

For the year as a whole, UK comparable sales were up 5.0 percent compared to 3.8 percent a year ago, while Ireland was down 0.2 percent compared to a 4.4 percent decline in 2011.

The group, which now has a total of 805 stores, has been expanding in Europe in recent years, acquiring franchise rights to operate in Germany, Switzerland, Luxembourg and Liechtenstein. It also has an option to open in Austria in 2014.

It said it had seen strong sales growth at its two mature stores in Germany and was excited about prospects there for a business it has said could outgrow its core UK operations.

Market expectations for Domino’s full-year pretax profit range between 45.8 million and 46.93 million pounds, with the average forecast standing at 46.31 million pounds, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Shares in the FTSE 250 listed firm closed at 527 pence on Monday, up 21 percent on a year ago, valuing the business at around 860 million pounds.

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