Domino's Pizza Group said today it expects to meet market expectations for 2020 profit as a lower value-added tax rate and higher online orders helped it post a 19% jump in third-quarter sales. 

The company has also benefited from the reopening of contact-free collections and the return of sporting events. 

Domino's said it expects annual underlying pretax profit to range between £93-98m, compared with £98.8m for 2019. 

A reduction in the UK's value-added tax rate to 5% from 20% in July helped Domino's in controlling costs, which had weighed on the company's first-half profit as it spent more on cooking and delivering its pizzas safely during the pandemic. 

Online sales now account for around 95% of delivery sales in Britain, the pizza delivery chain said. 

The company's UK and Ireland system sales rose to £342.1m in the quarter ended September 27, from £288.2m a year earlier.

"At the heart of our future plans is realignment with our franchisee partners and we are having detailed discussions to agree a sustainable way forward," chief executive Dominic Paul said, referring to a profit-sharing row with its franchisees.