Belfast Telegraph

Floated Card Factory posts rise in profits

By Roger Baird

Stock market debutant Card Factory said it will continue to roll out new stores after posting a rise in underlying profits.

The Wakefield-based firm, which employs 6,500 staff at 749 shops, is working towards the net addition of 50 sites in the current financial year, having opened 37 and closed one store in the six months to July 31.

The openings helped revenues rise 8.9% to £149.4m in the period, with the figure 2.6% higher when changes in store space are stripped out.

Operating profits lifted 9.3% to £26.1m but it swung to a bottom-line loss of £7.9m, from £3.7m a year ago, after booking £22.8m of one-off charges caused by its May stock market listing and a debt refinancing. Shares rose 2%, though it still trades below its 225p floatation price.

Chief executive Richard Haynes said: "It is pleasing to report a strong set of maiden interim results. We continue to deliver on each of our four pillars of growth – growing like-for-like sales; rolling out new stores; delivering business efficiencies; and increasing our online business."

Belfast Telegraph