Rank shrugs off Brexit hit to pound as profits rise 15% to £85.5m

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Mecca Bingo operator Rank Group has said Britain's decision to quit the European Union will have "little or no direct impact" on its performance.

Rank, which recently pulled out of a joint bid with 888 for rival William Hill, said it will not be affected by the plunge in the pound as it is a predominantly UK-facing business.

It added that in the seven weeks to the middle of August, trading has "been positive and is in line with management's expectations".

However, Rank said: "Any likely impact would be driven by any macro-economic impact of lower UK growth rates or loss of consumer confidence and spending power."

The company, which also operates Grosvenor casinos, made the announcement alongside its full-year results, which saw pre-tax profits rise 15% to £85.5 million.

Revenue ticked up 1% to £708.5 million across the group, while like-for-like sales at Mecca rose 2%.

Chief executive Henry Birch said: "Rank remains in a strong financial position, possesses market-leading brands and has a clear strategy for long-term growth. The board continues to look to the future with confidence."

Last week, Rank and 888 threw in the towel in their pursuit of William Hill, abandoning a £3.6 billion three-way merger attempt.