Debenhams is upbeat despite volatile trading
Debenhams said it will hit City expectations for this year, despite yesterday posting its weakest sales for more than two years and reporting "volatile" high street trading in its third quarter.
The department stores chain also revealed that it will create 430 new and temporary jobs at its flagship store in London's Oxford Street before Christmas, as part of a £25m refurbishment that will see it open a new restaurant and café, and add a floor of selling space.
Michael Sharp, the chief executive, said: "The market place has been very challenging, whether it be the very cold weather or the consumer backdrop. In that context, we have delivered a robust performance. I am particularly pleased with the growth in market share in key categories, which is a clear manifestation that customers are liking what we are doing."
Mr Sharp said Debenhams had gained market share in its menswear, womenswear, homeware and premium beauty departments. But he admitted that it had lost a 0.1 per cent share in childrenswear, which he blamed on allocating more space to other categories.
The impact of the sun coming out on its weekly trading could be seen in Debenhams posting underlying sales down by 22 per cent during a cold week in early March and a 16 per cent leap in a warm mid-April.
Debenhams delivered flat like-for-like sales over the 16 weeks to 22 June, following eight consecutive quarters of growth. This was lower than analyst expectations of an uplift of up to 2 per cent, and a marked slowdown on 3.1 per cent growth in first half.
Total sales rose by only 1 per cent but online revenue boomed by 40 per cent in the third quarter. This helped Debenhams boast that it will meet City expectations of pre-tax profits of between £150m and £157m, compared with the £158.3m delivered last year.
- 1 PlayStation and Xbox hacked by Lizard Squad
- 2 Katie Hopkins speaks out on childhood obesity: 'Parents of fat children should be prosecuted for child cruelty'
- 3 The Grace Dent Christmas Questionnaire
- 4 The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public set to see exhibits from police’s grisly crime museum
- 5 Vagina canoe artist defends herself over ‘obscenity’ charges
PlayStation and Xbox hacked by Lizard Squad
Boxing Day snowfall set to push even more bargain-hunters online for sales
Katie Hopkins speaks out on childhood obesity: 'Parents of fat children should be prosecuted for child cruelty'
The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public set to see exhibits from police’s grisly crime museum
Postcard from... The Vatican
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Alex Salmond has 'broken his word to the Scottish people' says Scottish Lib Dem leader
iJobs Money & Business
Not specified: Selby Jennings: Quantitative Research | Global Equity | New Yor...
Not specified: Selby Jennings: SVP Model Validation This top tiered investment...
Highly Competitive: Selby Jennings: Our client, a leading European Oil trading...
£43500 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: Night Shift Operatio...