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Halfords profits dip despite strong sales rise

Halfords has seen its full year pre-tax profit decline despite achieving a strong uplift in sales.


Halfords profits dip despite strong sales rise

In the year to 31 March, group revenue climbed by 7.2% to almost £1.1 billion as the retailer strengthened its services proposition, introduced new product ranges, modernised its business and acquired the Tredz/Wheelies bike business.

Like-for-like sales in the motoring category grew by 2% while the cycling category saw an uplift of 5.1%. Service-related like-for-like retail sales climbed 11.1% while sales at Halfords autocentres increased by 2.4%.

However, underlying pre-tax profit declined by 7.5% to £75.4 million as the retailer was impacted by the movement of foreign currency rates.

Jill McDonald, Halfords chief executive, said: "I am pleased with the performance this year, with sales growth across all areas of our business and market share gains in both motoring and cycling.

“Profit performance for the year was impacted by the weaker Pound but our plans are well developed and I am confident this will be offset over time. We have made great progress with our 'Moving Up A Gear' strategy, with increased customer insight and sustained growth in service-related sales being particular highlights.”

Earlier this month it was announced that McDonald will be leaving the business later in the year to become managing director for clothing, home and beauty at Marks & Spencer.

Commenting on the move, Dennis Millard, Halfords chairman, added: "We are grateful for the positive contribution Jill has made across the business and she will leave Halfords with a strong team in place and a clear direction to drive future growth. Our priorities remain unchanged, including consolidating our service and services credentials, continuing to invest in our colleagues, and further investment in our shops and online platforms."

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