It’s becoming a real challenge to keep up with the success of Greggs and find words worthy of their achievements. This company has grown from humble beginnings from one shop in Gosforth to a gigantic national brand that has no limits to its ambition, and success just keeps on growing. It is one of the greatest business success stories to come from Newcastle. Long may it continue.
Greggs almost defies gravity, lifting sales by 23% to £1.5 billion in 2022. And this is despite the cost of living crisis, the strikes and less money in everyone’s pockets. They have over 2,328 shops now, having opened 186 new ones and closed 39 during the year
In their results announcement to the London Stock exchange on Thursday 5 January, the company said it noted strong interest in its Festive Bake and Salted Caramel Latte products, but said plant-based foods, such as its Vegan Festive Baguette, contributed “more significantly” to trade.
Evening meal proposition
Greggs as a destination may or may not be top of your list for an evening meal out but its popularity is growing. Greggs has reported that early evening is now the fastest growing part of its daily trade, with pizzas and sides such as potato wedges becoming increasingly popular as the cost-of-living crisis hits households’ spending power.
Chief Executive, Roisin Currie said
“Almost a quarter of Greggs’ 2,300 shops now stay open until 8pm after it first began trialling evening meals in 2019.
Families were looking to make their money go further as inflation pushes up the price of everything from groceries to energy.
“[Pizza has] a winning price point. A slice of pizza and a drink [from Greggs] is £2.40. If you’re on your way home from work, on your way to the cinema or meeting friends, that’s a great proposition.
Greggs had massive press coverage when it first launched its vegan sausage roll. This was when the presenter, Piers Morgan went into something of a rage about the vegan options. However, now the vegan options are embedded into the chain’s offerings and they have ambitions to have a vegan option for every menu item.
Gift card options
I must admit when my 18-year-old nephew asked for a Greggs gift card as part of his Christmas present, I was taken aback. Somewhat reassuringly he also got a play station voucher, but this shows just how innovative this company has become and the introduction of simple ideas has really taken off. One of the messages on the festive Greggs giftcard said:
“Have yourself a flakey bakey Christmas.” Nice.
It may be a very well-worn phrase but the world is their oyster does come to mind. Future success looks well assured and international expansion must be on the menu of options they are looking at.
Huge congratulation to the Toon’s most loved and appreciated national brand and we can anticipate more innovation and great ideas from them going forward
PS: No Greggs were consumed during the writing of this article…