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QD Christmas sales hit an all-time high

Published: 2 January 2013
Strong sales of festive decorations and plants helped value retailer QD achieve record Christmas trading figures.
QD Christmas sales hit an all-time high
Like-for-like sales at the company were up 8.19%, which group managing director Justin Farrington Smith put down to long-term campaign planning and enhancements to logistics and customer services.

"While trading is tough all round we're very pleased to have turned in strong sales figures for the Christmas trading period, with continued growth in both profit and margin," he said.

"We started planning our Christmas campaign back in January, giving us plenty of time to hone our offer, while investment in IT infrastructure has helped to drive improvements in supply chain availability."

Norwich-based QD operates 38 retail outlets under the QD, Lathams of Potter Heigham and Cherry Lane Garden Centre brands, extending from eastern England and the Home Counties to Doncaster in the north and Wrexham in the west.

Christmas trading at the group saw like-for-like store sales of festive decorations, novelties and lights up by 16.64% and household cleaning and toiletries up by 43.88%, while at Cherry Lane Garden Centres plants and seeds sales increased 26.37%.

QD expanded its Cherry Lane Garden Centre chain to a total of nine sites during 2012. It acquired new-build sites at Towcester in Northamptonshire and Cromford in Derbyshire, along with the freehold and assets of Croft Nurseries & Garden Centre in Beverley, Yorkshire.

A joint redevelopment with supermarket Morrisons of the former Buyright site at Hadleigh, Suffolk also provided QD with a new 20,000sq ft store and an existing wraparound garden centre space. In addition, a pop-up store in Watton, Norfolk traded to expectations, and the group says it now wants to trade more pop-ups in 2013.

"We're working on a major e-commerce re-launch for 2013 with further stores commencing trading so we anticipate an even stronger sales performance for next Christmas," Mr Farrington Smith added.

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