Domino's profit surges 31% as the Australian region eats half a billion dollars worth of pizza in six months

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Domino’s Pizza posted a 31% increase in first half net profit to $59.7 million as sales soared to a record. The company also lifted its profit growth forecast for the full-year.

Domino’s, which also has operations in Europe and Japan, now sees net profit climbing 32.5% compared with its previous estimate of 30%. That comes on the back of higher sales expectations in Australia and New Zealand. It kept its capital investment plans at $85 million to $95 million and store additions at 175-195 for the year.

Domino’s is gaining from its “most significant” menu upgrade in eight years, investment in technology including delivery by drones, store additions and and acquisitions in Europe.

“Group wide, Domino’s sales and profits will accelerate in the second half, including through the conversion of European acquisitions,” the company said. “Margins will continue to increase, particularly in Europe, as we leverage our larger network and reap the benefits from automation and efficiencies.”

The company will pay shareholders an interim dividend of 48.4 cents, up 39.5% from a year earlier.

Domino’s reiterated it has zero tolerance for unethical behaviour in its business, including under-payment of wages or under-reporting of sales.

This week, the company said it is investigating reports that its franchisees demanded payment from oversees workers to support their visa applications. A Fairfax Media report says the going rate is $30,000 to $150,000 to get a work visa, depending on the nationality and the job at Domino’s.

“I would prefer all of our franchisees lived up to our expected standards, and I am disappointed some individuals have tried to take advantage of our business, and team members,” Group CEO Don Meij aid. “But I am proud that our proactive team has uncovered this wrongdoing and corrected it.”

Domino’s has removed four franchisees, which operated seven stores for wilful breaches of their employment obligations. In addition, after conducting compliance audits, an additional 22 franchisees chose to exit, it said.

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