Another robust quarter for Dunelm as sales slide 8%

Furniture and homewares retailer Dunelm has reported robust trading and unchanged expectations during its first quarter.

According to its latest Q1 update for 13-week period ended 1 October 2022, total sales were down 8.3% to £357m from £388.8m against the same period last year, but up 36% over a two year comparison. Digital sales represented 33%.

Dunelm said that gross margin was 130bps lower than last year, which was expected, reflecting more normal patterns of customer behaviour. The retailer is focused on ‘maintaining tight operational grip’ and remains confident of delivering a full year gross margin of c.50%, in line with previous guidance.

Nick Wilkinson, Chief Executive Officer, commented: “It has been another robust quarter for Dunelm against a very strong comparative period, which illustrates the strength and resilience of our business model and the appeal of our market-leading offer.

“Dunelm has emerged from the last two years as a bigger, better business, with total sales up 36% against the same period pre-Covid. We have benefitted from the commitment, expertise and adaptability of our colleagues and supplier partners – the same qualities that are serving the business as we navigate the current inflationary challenges.

“As we enter what will clearly be a challenging winter for consumers, our absolute focus remains on making every pound count for everyone, through a tight grip on operations. We will continue to offer outstanding value at all price points, so our customers can make their own choices around adapting to the economic backdrop. This focus on value has seen Dunelm successfully navigate previous periods of economic uncertainty.

“The landscape is a demanding one, but we feel both energised and confident in our ability to grow market share as the 1st choice for UK homelovers.”

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