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Home Retail Group: end of year trading statement

Home Retail Group, the UK’s leading home and general merchandise retailer, is required for the financial year just ended, to report its financial results for the 53-week statutory period ended 3 March 2012. The numbers reported today cover the final eight-week period for the proforma 52-week period ended 25 February 2012. Terry Duddy, Chief Executive of Home Retail Group, commented:

“With trends in this short, low volume, trading period being broadly as we anticipated, Group benchmark profit before tax for the 52-week period ended 25 February 2012 is expected to be in-line with current market expectations. Whilst we begin the new financial year in good operational shape, we will continue to manage robustly both the cost base and the cash position of the Group, while prioritising investment in the ongoing development of our multichannel capabilities.”

Argos:
Total sales at Argos declined by 7.7% to £480m in the period. Net new space contributed 0.8%; one new store opened and 12 stores closed reducing the store portfolio to 748. Like-for-like sales declined by 8.5% in the period, principally driven by the continued weakness in the consumer electronics market. Total internet sales grew slightly with internet penetration remaining strong at 40% of Argos’ total sales, up from 36% a year ago.

The gross margin rate was flat.

Homebase:
Total sales at Homebase declined by 6.2% to £195m in the period. Net new space contributed 0.3%; there was one store closure reducing the store portfolio to 341. Like-for-like sales declined by 6.5% in the period, principally driven by the continued weakness in big ticket sales.

For the full release, see our Industry Articles page.

Source : Home Retail Group
www.homeretailgroup.com/media/130695/end_of_year_trading_statement.pdf

15 March 2012
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