Wickes' like-for-like sales drop 6.1%
Travis Perkins has reported that like-for-like sales at its Wickes DIY chain dropped 6.1% in the four months to end April while retail sales fell by 5%.
The group said sales had been impacted by challenging trading conditions in the first quarter as well as by the very cold weather at the beginning of the year. However, the performance had shown signs of improvement in April and May with the arrival of warmer weather.
Travis Perkins, which also operates builders merchant and plumbing and heating divisions, saw its group revenue fall by 1.2% in the four month period while group like-for-like sales edged down 1.8%.
The group said the impact on first quarter sales was unlikely to be recovered in the remaining eight months of the year although a continued focus on margin and costs meant that full year earnings per share were likely to be in line with market expectations.
Geoff Cooper, Travis Perkins chief executive, said: "Latent demand and better weather has contributed to the encouraging trend at the start of the second quarter, with sales recovering in April and early May as activity has picked up. Leading indicators have strengthened, which continues to suggest there should be an improvement in volumes in the second half of the year as we anticipated.
"Overall, the group continues to be in good shape and poised to respond to any meaningful signs of market recovery."
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