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Africa’s largest branded food services franchiser Famous Brands on Monday prepared investors for a grim set of results, blaming Eskom’s blackouts as well as "economic and political uncertainty" across all its markets, including the UK where the prospects of a damaging Brexit looms large. In a statement released shortly after markets closed, the owner of the Steers, Wimpy, Tashas and Mugg & Bean brands said it expected earnings in the year to February to fall more than a fifth. In the UK, where it owns the Gourmet Burger Kitchen chain, sales across the group fell 7% in pounds. "During the review period, economic and political uncertainty persisted across all our market," the quick service and dining restaurant franchiser said. "Challenging trading conditions constrained consumer discretionary spend and keen competitor activity intensified margin pressure." Inconsistent power supply in SA due to the implementation of power rationing had stifled consumer sentiment, it said. Eskom, the ...

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