Upmarket chocolate retailer Hotel Chocolat’s Christmas success will have tasted sweet for investors.

The AIM-listed company revealed a 16.2% sales surge over the festive period as customers snapped up its tasty treats.

The chocolatier has found a sweet spot with consumers seeking aspirational gifts.

Boss Angus Thirlwell told Retail Week that over Christmas shoppers ditched “sugar-laden cheap chocolate and invested in a smaller amount of high-quality chocolate”.

Thirlwell believes that quality pays off, and it certainly did over Christmas. Hotel Chocolat has established itself as the go-to place for stocking fillers for those with a sweet tooth.

Outside of retail, the biggest news of the day was Theresa May’s long-awaited speech that outlined her Brexit priorities.

May set out her plan to push for the “greatest possible” access to the single market following Brexit and secure tariff-free trade. The pound has taken a much-needed jump against the dollar in the wake of May’s speech.

Quote of the day

“This agreement.. should give British companies the maximum possible freedom to trade with and operate within European markets and let European businesses do the same in Britain.”

Prime minister Theresa May

Today in numbers


Bonus bagged by New Look boss Anders Kristiansen following the retailer’s sale to Brait


Inflation rate in December, the highest level since July 2014

Tomorrow’s agenda

Burberry will reveal how it fared over Christmas as it unveils its third-quarter trading figures tomorrow.

Gemma Goldfingle, features editor