Pets at Home like-for-like sales up 4.1% in first quarter
Pets at Home saw its like-for-like sales climb by 4.1% in its first quarter driven by the popularity of its Very Important Pets loyalty club.
In the 16 weeks to 17 July, total revenue grew by 10.4% to £210.8 million as the company opened 10 new stores, 16 veterinary practices and 19 Groom Rooms.
Pets at Home said its VIP Club was one of the big drivers of like-for-like sales growth after it signed up 400,000 members in the period to take the total to 2.4 million. In addition, VIP card swipes increased to 57% of store revenues, up from 52% during the final quarter of FY14.
The company continued to invest in its website PetsAtHome.com by extending its functionality and increasing the range of products. Pets at Home is currently rolling out its ‘Deliver to Store’ delivery option which is expected to be fully operational across the store estate by the end of August.
During the quarter, Pets at Home grew its merchandise revenues by 9% to £192.5 million, with 8.8% growth in food revenues and 9.2% growth in accessories revenues.
Like-for-like revenue growth was 18.3% within the retailer’s joint venture veterinary practices, which helped services revenues to rise by 27.3% to £18.3 million.
In 2015, Pets at Home will aim to open at least 25 new stores, 60 new veterinary practices and 50 new Groom Room salons.
Looking ahead, the company said: “Given the strong first quarter performance, continued momentum in our VIP Club, the developing maturity of veterinary practices and Groom Rooms, and plans to further enhance our Advanced Nutrition offering in stores this Autumn, we remain confident in our expectations for the full financial year.”
Pets at Home chief executive Nick Wood added: "We are pleased with the start to our financial year, with first quarter like-for-like growth of 4.1%. Our differentiated offering in the pet retail market, an increasingly seamless approach to omni-channel, and growing customer participation and engagement in our VIP loyalty programme continues to drive strong returns.
"We will continue to seize opportunities to grow and develop Pets At Home and focus on the delivery of our strategy. Given the strong first quarter performance, we remain confident in our expectations for the full financial year."
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