Belfast Telegraph

Sandwich chain set to create 550 new posts

Sandwich chain Pret A Manger is to create 550 jobs in the UK as it steps up its expansion plans after a year of record sales and store openings.

The company wouldn't confirm if it was opening any stores in Northern Ireland.

The chain, which opened in London in 1986 and has 286 shops, mainly in the UK, said sales rose 15% to £377m in the year to December 29 while underlying profits were up 14% to £52m, boosted by 24 new stores.

The firm, which employs nearly 5,000 people in the UK and gives its leftover food to the homeless, has pledged to open 24 more sites in the UK in 2012 and 20 overseas, including its first in Boston in the United States.

Chief executive Clive Schlee said: "2011 was a year of strong revenue and profit growth where we built a record number of new stores in the UK and abroad."