Belfast Telegraph

Retailer rolls out £800k loss

By Peter Cripps

The country's largest floor-covering retailer Carpetright slid to a first-half loss as the consumer spending squeeze took its toll.

The retailer, which operates 503 stores in the UK including around 15 in Northern Ireland, recorded a bottom-line loss of £800,000 in the 26 weeks to October 29, compared to profits of £9.8m in the same period the previous year.

Profit margins fell by 4.3 percentage points as it put on more promotions amid “volatile” trading conditions but UK like-for-like sales still declined 2.4%.

Although it said the conditions would remain “challenging”, it was optimistic that its trading performance would improve in its second-half after a recent increase in mortgage approvals, which traditionally drives sales of home improvement products.

Carpetright was also hit by exceptional charges as a result of restructuring after it closed 36 stores.

On an underlying basis, which strips out these costs, profits fell 86% to £1.4m from £10m.

Belfast Telegraph

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