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Dunelm like-for-like sales up 5% in third quarter

Homewares retailer Dunlem increased its like-for-like sales by 5% in its third quarter as it continued to invest in its customer proposition to drive sales.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Dunelm like-for-like sales up 5% in third quarter

Homewares retailer Dunlem increased its like-for-like sales by 5% in its third quarter as it continued to invest in its customer proposition to drive sales.

In the 13 weeks to 29 March 2014, total revenue grew by 9.9% to £195.4 million.

Dunelm said the strong like-for-like growth had been helped by the absence of any snow disruption this year as well as by its ongoing investment in multi-channel, the further roll-out of its Dunelm At Home proposition, and improved customer service training. Sales were also boosted by TV advertising and an expanded spring catalogue.

The retailer opened four new stores in the period, including one new and one relocated superstore, and expects to open two further outlets by the end of the financial year. This will take the number of store openings for the full financial year to 12 and the superstore portfolio to 136 stores at the year-end, compared with Dunelm’s medium term target to operate from 200 UK superstores.

Dunelm said it had made good progress in its multi-channel business with “pleasing revenue growth” after it improved its delivery options following the opening a new fulfilment facility last autumn. The retailer is now planning to move its website to a new software platform with completion due in the summer.

Nick Wharton, Dunelm chief executive, said: "Dunelm has again delivered a period of solid progress. This reflects, in part, our willingness to invest to underpin the longer-term growth of the business - including in increased advertising to build brand awareness, further enhancing our home delivery proposition, and expanding our in-home consultation service. These investments will continue, increasing our operating cost ratio whilst benefiting sales and further strengthening our market leading proposition."

He added: "With clear opportunities to develop further our in-store offer, to expand our store portfolio and to benefit from our exciting multi-channel and customer service initiatives, the Board remains confident in the growth prospects for the business."

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