Bikes pumping up Halfords' sales

Car repairs and premium bike sales helped Halfords to ride out a flat Christmas, with the group today announcing a modest rise in its profit expectations.

The retailer, which has 460 Halfords branches and 271 Autocentre outlets across the UK, saw like-for-like revenues up 1 per cent in the 15 weeks to 11 January and now expects full-year profits to be £68m to £72m.

Sales at Autocentres rose 5.6 per cent. Retail stores were largely flat, inching up 0.4 per cent. In November, Halfords signed up the Olympic gold-medallist Victoria Pendleton to design bikes. Today it announced a deal to stock Pinarello bikes – the brand ridden by Bradley Wiggins to victory in the Tour de France, left.

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