Published on 4 - August - 2010
Carpetright remains cautious as lfl UK sales drop 3.4%Carpet and flooring specialist expected consumer demand to "remain subdued", while the closing of operations in Poland affects group sales.
A trading update, released today, revealed a 0.9% sales decline for Carpetright in the UK and ROI for the 13 weeks ended July 31, 2010, while like-for-like (lfl) sales were down 3.4%.
Group sales declined by 2.5% in what is Carpetright's first quarter, with the year-on-year effect of the company closing its Polish operations, accounting for 0.6% of this decline.
Operations in the rest of Europe saw a total sales decline of 3.3%, with lfl sales down 4.2% in constant currency.
Carpetright chairman and chief executive Lord Harris of Peckham commented on the results: "As announced previously, we had expected consumer demand to remain subdued as we entered our new financial year, and this view is reflected in the update announced today.
"We remain cautious about the outlook for consumer spending for the balance of the year and, as a consequence, continue to manage the business by exerting tight control over all costs, capital expenditure, stock and cashflow. Gross margins in the UK are up on the previous year, largely as a result of promotional activity."
He added: "Our focus on strong value-led retail brands will enable the group to capitalise on its market leading positions in its geographical markets when economic conditions improve."
Carpetright's preliminary results for the 52 weeks to May 1, 2010, revealed a 7% increase in total group sales to £516m, while underlying profit before tax and exceptionals jumped 64% to £28.2m.
The flooring and carpet retailer's UK and ROI sales were boosted by the inclusion of bed brand Sleepright to its offer, with total revenue jumping 7.9% to £425.2m
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