Currys peak sales slide amid ‘challenging’ tech market
Currys saw its group like-for-like sales decline by 5% in the run-up to Christmas, although sales were up 4% on the same period two years ago before the pandemic struck.
In the ten weeks to 8 January, UK and Ireland like-for-like revenue was down 6% year-on-year and by 2% on a two-year basis as the retailer prioritised profitable sales in a tech market that was down 10% year-on-year.
International like-for-like revenue fell by 3% on last year but rose by 14% on a two-year basis.
Meanwhile, online sales in the UK were up 29% compared to two years ago and by 79% in the company’s international markets.
Alex Baldock, Currys group chief executive, said: “The technology market was challenging this Christmas, with uneven customer demand and supply disruption. Against this backdrop, Currys’ colleagues showed their resilience and the stronger business we’ve built. We gained market share, improved customer satisfaction, traded profitably, and can look ahead with confidence.”
Currys said demand for some tech was strong in the period with game consoles flying of the shelves. Baldock added: “Oculus Quest 2 and PS5 were stars. Appliances large and small also enjoyed strong sales, as consumers continued to kit out their homes. Still, the overall the UK tech market was down 10% compared to last year’s peak period.”
The December performance meant that Currys’ group like-for-like revenue in the year to date is down 3% compared to last year, but up 11% on a two-year basis. The retailer expects group full year adjusted pre-tax profit to come in at around £155 million.
Looking ahead, Currys said: “Having delivered a resilient peak trading period against a difficult market, our outlook assumes no further significant disruption from Covid-19. We’ve exited peak with stock in a good position although we are continuing to face into uncertain demand and supply chain disruption which means there are some areas where availability remains challenged.”
Baldock added: “Nobody is resting here, of course, and much hard work lies ahead. We can see the prize of a Currys that’s world class for colleagues, customers, shareholders and society, a Currys that helps everyone enjoy amazing technology. That’s the Currys we’re building.”
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