JW Lees grew sales by 6.2% in the year to 31 March 2014 to a record level of £62.9m whilst EBITDA was £7.5m, down from £7.9m in 2013, a fall of 4.1%.

The Manchester brewer and pub operator bought two new tenanted pubs, The Old Station in Llandudno and The Ship in Haskayne, during the year as well as opening its second managed Duttons café bar in Albert Square opposite the Town Hall in Manchester. Seven bottom-end pubs and the last of the company’s two pubs in France were sold during the year. JW Lees was awarded the 2013 Manchester Evening News Business of the Year as well as being a finalist in the 2014 EY Entrepreneur of the Year and the PWC 2014 Private Business Awards.

William Lees-Jones, the sixth generation Managing Director of the family business said, ‘It’s been another great year for JW Lees and, although our profits have dipped a little, we are maintaining an average compound annual growth rate of 8.3% in EBITDA over the last five years as well as reducing our gearing to its lowest level in recent history. It is a great privilege to lead the JW Lees team and I would like to thank colleagues for their outstanding contributions which resulted in 449 people sharing in our first ever company-wide profit-share as well as welcoming our first formal graduate trainee intake in September 2014. We are now actively looking to grow the company to £100m in sales over the next few years and see great opportunities for adding quality pubs to both our managed and tenanted estates’.