Carpetright's underlying profit more than doubles
Carpet and flooring retailer Carpetright saw its underlying pre-tax profit more than double in the year to 27 April as self-help measures led the group to enjoy a turnaround in UK sales.
The group, which operates 478 stores across the UK, said underlying profits in its domestic market increased to £9.7 million from £4 million in the previous year.
However, a fall in revenues in the rest of Europe together with write downs on properties and leases meant that the group made an overall bottom-line loss of £5.1 million compared to a £13.5 million profit last year.
Like-for-like sales in the UK increased by 2.2% as trade was boosted by store refurbishments, an improved range of products and services, and an increase in digital marketing.
The group refurbished 154 UK stores in the period, taking the total number of revamped stores to 186. Carpetright said the fully modernised stores had seen sales uplifts of over 10% in the period.
In the Rest of Europe, like-for-like sales declined by 11% as the group experienced particularly difficult trading conditions in the Netherlands where the floor coverings market remains weak.
Commenting on the results chief executive Darren Shapland, who took over from Lord Harris of Peckham last year, said: “The group grew underlying profits and generated cash during the year, with an encouraging increase in UK retail store like-for-like sales and a significant improvement in gross profit percentage year-on-year. In the Rest of Europe, trading conditions in the Netherlands remained difficult whilst progress has been made in the recovery plan for the Republic of Ireland.
"The success of our self-help activities in improving group performance during the period was particularly encouraging, demonstrating that a focus on factors within our control can yield good results.
"While we expect trading conditions to remain challenging, we are confident that the combination of these self-help initiatives will underpin the positive momentum of the group."
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