Brewer and pubs group Marston’s Plc said it has made a strong start to the new financial year even as it reported a rise in profits for the 52 weeks ended Oct. 2.

We are benefiting from our focused, differentiated strategy as demonstrated by our robust results in 2010 and a strong start to the new financial year,'' chief executive Ralph Findlay said.

Like-for-like (LFL) sales at its managed pubs, Marston’s Inns and Taverns, grew 1.7 percent for the full year. For the 8 weeks to Nov. 27, the company said managed LFL sales rose 3.0 percent.

At its tenanted division, Marston's Pub Co, the results from the 104 pubs which have adopted the Retail Agreement, aimed at reviving tenanted outlets, have been encouraging, the company said.

Revene at Marston’s Beer Co, the company's brewing arm, rose 4.5 percent.

For the full year, the group's underlying pretax profit increased 4.6 percent to 73.5 million pounds. Pretax profit was 52.5 million pounds, compared with 21.4 million pounds last year.

Revenue rose 0.9 percent to 650.7 million pounds ($1 billion).

The company's pub estate totals 2,153 pubs - 1,664 tenancies within Marston's Pub Co and 489 directly managed by Marston's Inns & Taverns, according to its Web site. Marston's brews some of the UK's leading ale brands including Marston's, Banks's, Brakspear, Jennings, Hobgoblin, Mansfield and Ringwood.

Shares of Marston’s are trading 3.28 percent higher at 104.00 pence at 09:14 am GMT Thursday on the London Stock Exchange.