ScS to post profit; recent order levels reduced due to low consumer confidence

Upholstered furniture and floorings retailer ScS has announced that full year profit is expected to be ahead of market expectations.

In its latest trading update for the 52 weeks ended 30 July 2022, ahead of announcing its preliminary results on 11 October 2022, ScS said that trading has been positive and saw like-for-like orders growth of 3.9% when compared to FY21, although FY21 was impacted by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

There was a 3.9% reduction in orders when compared to FY19, the last period not impacted by the pandemic.

At 30 July 2022, the Group’s order book was £71.7m (including VAT), £31.8m lower than at the same point in the prior year and £28.8m higher than at the same point in 2019.

“The board is pleased to announce that positive trading, strong margin, and effective cost management during the year means the Group now expects to report full year profit ahead of market expectations,” the retailer said.

“The Group’s financial position remains robust, with cash at 30 July 2022 of £70.8m and no debt. The Group remains committed to the share buyback programme announced in March 2022 to repurchase and cancel up to £7m of its share capital. The programme is progressing well and as at 30 July the Group had repurchased and cancelled 1.24m shares.

“In recent months we have seen reduced in-store and online visitors resulting in a reduction in order levels, driven by the widely reported falling consumer confidence as a result of the cost of living pressures and economic uncertainty.

“We expect the low consumer confidence will continue to adversely impact the Group in FY23. However, the Group is in a strong position as we enter the new financial year, and strategic progress over the last 12 months means we are well positioned to take market share and maximise opportunities in a difficult environment.”

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