Signet finds some high street sparkle
Thursday 18 April 1996
Announcing tripled profits of pounds 25m for last year, Signet chairman Jim McAdam said he sensed more consumer optimism on the high street. "There is a bit more confidence around than there was but is very early days and it is not clear if can be sustained."
He said the two UK businesses were "only for sale at the right price" and though he declined to put a deadline on the sale, analysts expected a deal within a few weeks. A shortlist of bidders drawn up last week will be sent more detailed information on the companies.
The most eye-catching performance came from the group's more upmarket Ernest Jones chain, which the rival Goldsmiths group is interested in acquiring. Boosted by a pounds 4m refurbishment programme, like-for-like sales in the 167 stores increased by 4 per cent last year and by 24 per cent in the 10 weeks since the beginning of February.
The mass market H Samuel chain, which is thought to be coveted by Argos, had a tough time with comparative sales down by 3 per cent. The company is planning to test a new look in 15 stores in the summer with the view to extending it to all 429 shops if successful.
The American division, Sterling, increased profits by almost 40 per cent to pounds 46m.
The City has marked the shares up by 200 per cent since the start of the year. They closed 1p higher yesterday at 30.25p.
- 1 The truth about 'girl things': Three cheers for Heather Watson's honesty
- 2 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 4 Tennis fan suing Australian Open organisers for 'failing to shade spectators' during Murray match
- 5 Syrian refugee child beaten by Istanbul Burger King manager for eating customer’s leftover food
Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Rob Lowe hits out at White House decision not to meet Israeli leader
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign
Winston Churchill: From accusations of anti-Semitism to the blunt refusal that led to the deaths of millions
British Muslim leaders outraged after Eric Pickles says followers of Islam should 'prove their identity'
UK terror fears: My jihadist son returned from Syria mentally scarred – now he is being ignored
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
Billy Crystal: 'Stop shoving gay sex scenes in my face'
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
iJobs Money & Business
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Tax Assistant is required to join a leading ...
£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£45000 - £47000 per annum + bonus + benefits: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / ...
£35000 - £38000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Marke...