Sunshine lifts sales and retail profits at DIY chain B&Q
Wednesday 03 June 2009
B&Q, the Kingfisher-owned DIY chain, posted a strong rebound in profits and underlying sales in the first quarter, boosted by a later Easter and sizzling sales of charcoal BBQs during the recent warm weather.
However, the DIY group warned that it was unlikely to see such a weather-driven seasonal sales bounce again in 2009, and it continued to plan for tough conditions in its major markets.
The UK's biggest DIY chain, B&Q said sales of outdoor products soared by more than 30 per cent in the 13 weeks to 2 May, citing sales of charcoal BBQs up by 148 per cent and metal garden furniture higher by 140 per cent, as customers enjoyed themselves in their gardens.
However, Ian Cheshire, the group chief executive of Kingfisher, cautioned: "If you strip out the seasonal sales, the rest [of B&Q's trade] is trundling along around minus 2 to 3 per cent."
Despite sales of core DIY and decorative products being down by 2 per cent, Mr Cheshire said: "DIY was becoming cool again" and sales of tools were up by 20 per cent.
The 322-store DIY retail chain grew its total sales by 4.6 per cent to £1.04bn, and like-for-like sales rose by 3.2 per cent. B&Q doubled its retail profit to £58m and grew its gross margin by 80 basis points over the quarter, despite tough comparatives. Mr Cheshire said: "Over the last 18 months, the work of the team on costs and margins has given us a lot of self-help."
Kingfisher, which has operations in countries including Poland, France and Russia, posted total group sales up 2.4 per cent to £2.6bn over the first quarter, although overall like-for-likes fell by 1.7 per cent. The group's retail profit jumped by 40.1 per cent to £128m. But sales at its troubled 51-store operation in China fell by 23.7 per cent.
- 1 Autistic adults could take pure MDMA to 'reduce social anxiety'
- 2 Before you complain about your GP, this is what you need to know about actually doing the job
- 3 Father of 12 accused of raping, beating, starving and abusing his own children in US 'cult'
- 4 Britain's Got Talent 2015: Jamie Raven divides Twitter as fans expose mind-boggling magic trick
- 5 Charlie Charlie Challenge explained: not a Mexican demon being summoned — it's gravity
People are criticising Fifa World Cup sponsors with corrupt corporate logos
Natalie Portman tells Harvard graduates: 'Accept your lack of knowledge'
British tourists complain impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Fifa corruption live: Sebb Blatter warns 'more bad news may follow' as he clings to power
Skull found in Spain could be the world's first-ever murder victim
EU referendum: David Cameron's rules are a 'democratic disgrace', says French-born Scottish politician set to be denied a vote
SNP fury as HS2 finds 'no business case' for taking fast train service to Scotland
Australian man punched in the face for defending Muslim women from abuse on train
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people
David Starkey 'tells Amal Clooney to shut up and stop over-promoting human rights'
EU referendum: David Cameron to deny EU migrants and under-18s the chance to vote
iJobs Money & Business
£30 - 35k: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pricing Analyst to join a leading e-...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £45K YR1: SThree: At SThree, we like to be dif...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: Did you know? SThree is a mul...
£55 - 65k (DOE): Guru Careers: A unique opportunity for a permanent C# Develop...