Pets at Home set to reveal strong sales but slower growth

The retail and vet business has profited from a buoyant pet market during the pandemic but analysts expect growth to slow for the rest of the year.

Charlie Conchie
Friday 19 November 2021 15:38
Pets at Home set to reveal bumper sales (Mike Egerton/PA)
Pets at Home set to reveal bumper sales (Mike Egerton/PA)

Pets at Home is set to reveal another jump in sales next week as a buoyant UK pet market continues to drive demand across both its retail and vet divisions.

The group has enjoyed a bumper period of growth throughout the pandemic on the back of a surge in pet ownership in the UK.

Bosses revealed sales growth of 30.2% for the three months to July compared with the same period in 2020, led by growth of 45% in its vet group.

Pets at Home boss Peter Pritchard recently announced he would stand down from the retailer. (Pets at Home / PA)

But equity analysts at Berenberg said they were expecting this growth to slow down. They predicted sales growth of around 15% for the remainder of the year, while growth in the vet group would slow to 20%.

Pets at Home’s half-year results on Tuesday come just two weeks after the chief executive, Peter Pritchard, announced he was moving on from the firm after 11 years.

The business upped its guidance for the year’s pre-tax profits alongside the announcement of his departure and said it was now predicting profits of £130 million, a 49% jump compared with 2020.

Shares fell 3.6% after the news but Sophie Lund-Yates, equity analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown said the market’s reaction was one of “simple disappointment”.

She said: “Mr Pritchard has overseen an impressive turnaround, and guided the pet superstore through astonishing growth during the pandemic. However, this is a natural time to walk away. This isn’t a case of a less savoury ousting or running for the hills.

“The baton being passed on to any successor is in a much better condition than it was, and the wider challenge for the newcomer will be coming up with ways to keep gathering momentum.”

Adam Tomlinson, equity analyst at Liberum, said that Pritchard “leaves the group better positioned than ever” and that the demand in the pet market shows no sign of waning.

He said: “The UK pet market remains robust, and the strong performance witnessed across both parts of the business during the second half of last year has continued throughout the past six months.”

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged in