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Primark boosted by half year sales jump

Primark owner Associated British Foods has said first half trading at the fashion retailer was significantly better than expected due to strong footfall and the appeal… View Article

FASHION RETAIL NEWS UK

Primark boosted by half year sales jump

Primark owner Associated British Foods has said first half trading at the fashion retailer was significantly better than expected due to strong footfall and the appeal of its proposition to new and existing customers.

In the 24 weeks to 4 March, total Primark sales grew by 19% year-on-year to £4.2 billion with increases in all markets. Like-for-like sales were 10% ahead of last year driven by higher average selling prices and unit volumes as Primark benefited from increased footfall in both the UK and Europe.

Meanwhile, the retailer’s adjusted operating profit came in at £351 million in the period with a margin of 8.3%.

Total sales in the UK were 15% ahead of the same period a year ago driven by like-for-like sales growth of 15%. ABF said trading was significantly improved in its destination city centre stores as the number of tourists and office workers returned to more normal levels following the pandemic.

Total sales in Europe, excluding the UK, were 18% higher, with an increase in like-for-like sales of 8%. The retailer benefited from particularly strong performances in its larger markets of Spain, France and Germany.

Looking at the US, total sales rose by 11% following buoyant trading across the retailer’s 16 stores. After opening three new stores in the country in the period, it is now planning to launch a further five shops in the second half.

Across the wider ABF business, which includes, grocery, sugar and ingredients divisions, adjusted pre-tax profit slipped by 3% to £684 million.

George Weston, chief executive of ABF, said: “Primark has been very successful in this period in attracting new customers with its proposition of good quality merchandise combined with price leadership and well invested stores. We have had a very strong contribution from new stores opened in the period, and today we are announcing plans for the development of our Primark business in southern states of the US.”

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