Domino's Pizza Group said today its annual pretax profit would be slightly ahead of market expectations after the television music competition, X Factor, boosted its fourth-quarter sales. 

The pizza delivery firm said more people ordered food at home since X Factor Final hit television screens on December 2, helping it post an 18.2% rise in fourth-quarter sales. 

Domino's, which operates in Ireland, the UK, Switzerland and Germany, said group system sales for the 13 weeks to December 24 rose to £321.8m from £272.4m a year ago. 

The company said its Irish sales were up 12% on a constant currency basis. 

Its like-for-like sales grew 10.4% and it opened a new store in the three month period, taking its total in Ireland to 49.

Meanwhile, sales at UK stores open over a year rose 6.1% during the 13-week period.

Its UK online sales rose 14.5% year-on-year in the fourth quarter, representing 77% of total system sales in the period.