Bed frames among best sellers at B&Q; group lowers forecast

Home improvement retailer B&Q has reported a growth in sales while group revenues also posted an increase.

According to the latest Kingfisher, parent company of B&Q, second quarter and half year trading update for the year ended 31 July 2023, total group sales were up 1.1% to £6.8bn, while adjusted pre-tax profit resulted at £336m, down 28.8% from £472m.

B&Q like-for-like sales for the second quarter rose 3.3%, with half year sales up 1.7%, as total UK & Ireland retail profit resulted at £306m, down 9.8% from £339m.

B&Q said that bed frames were among its top-selling marketplace products during the period.

Commenting, Kingfisher said: “In H1, B&Q successfully rolled out its new ‘Local’ sub-branding across all eight of its high street stores, following two successful tests in FY 22/23. ‘Local’ stores address the customer needs of immediacy and convenience in locations with high footfall.

“We continue to adopt a ‘test and learn’ approach with these B&Q compact stores, focusing on establishing the correct blueprint for the in-store range of products and services available for customers, while optimising the economics.

“B&Q opened one new store in H1 and closed all eight of its ‘grocery concession’ format stores. We believe there are around 50 catchments or geographic ‘white spaces’ in the UK where B&Q is currently under-represented.”

Reflecting H1 results and the trading environment in its markets, the group has updated its full year adjusted PBT guidance to c.£590m (previously c.£634m).

Thierry Garnier, Chief Executive Officer, said: “Trading in the UK & Ireland continues to have positive momentum. However, to better reflect our performance in H1 and the trading environment in our markets, we have updated our profit guidance for this year and are proactively managing our operating costs accordingly.

“We remain very positive on the medium-to-long term outlook for home improvement growth in our markets, and confident in our ability to grow market share and deliver on our medium-term financial objectives. Underscoring this confidence, we are today announcing a new £300m share buyback programme, starting in early October.”

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