Card Factory profits rise despite ‘challenging’ footfall
Greeting cards retailer Card Factory has seen its first half pre-tax profit rise to £27.2 million from £23.2 million in the same period in the prior year.
In the six months to 31 July, revenue climbed to £185.3 million from a previous £179.6 million but like-for-like sales edged down 0.2%.
Card Factory said sales in the period had been impacted by lower high street footfall and a weak consumer environment which led to poorer sales of its “everyday” ranges.
However, the company put in strong seasonal performances with its Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day ranges achieving record sales. There was also good growth in sales online.
During the period the company opened 25 net new UK stores to bring the total UK estate to 940.
Karen Hubbard, Card Factory chief executive, said: “We have delivered solid interim results with overall sales growth, despite the weak consumer environment and particularly challenging footfall across the high street, driven by various factors. Profitability was impacted by lower like-for-like sales, but we continue to largely mitigate the headwinds we face through various business efficiencies.”
Card Factory said it is continuing to expect that underlying EBITDA for the full year will be in the range of £89 million to £91 million.
Hubbard added: “As expected, trading in recent weeks has remained challenging given the weak consumer environment, but we have seen continued growth in average spend and improved performance of redesigned everyday ranges. The board is confident that the group will continue to make further strategic progress on new initiatives.”
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