Increased footfall at Smyths Toys in Northern Ireland boosts sales by 11%

Total turnover across seven Northern Ireland stores reached £56.2m last year

Turnover in Smyths Toys stores in Northern Ireland increased by 11 per cent last year to £56.2 million (€65.2 million) amid higher post-Covid footfall.

Accounts filed by Smyths Toys NI Ltd, the company which manages toy sales for seven retail outlets in Northern Ireland, show the £5.4 million increase in sales in the year to December 30th, 2022, came as gross profit grew by £2 million, from £6.7 million in 2021 to £8.7 million in 2022.

The company’s profit before tax for the year rose by 11 per cent to £1.1 million.

The directors of the company, brothers Anthony Smyth and Patrick Smyth, said that they were “pleased” with the outcome, which compared to pre-Covid profit before tax of £900,000 in 2019, “particularly given the current economic climate and the competitive market place”.


A dividend of £2 million was declared and settled on an intercompany basis during the year, while in 2021 no dividend was paid.

Although no new stores opened in Northern Ireland during 2022, average staff numbers increased from 197 to 209.

The directors highlighted a number of risk factors which could affect the company’s future operating profits or financial position.

These include competition from online retailers, ongoing risks surrounding Covid, a failure to renew or replace existing contracts when they expire, the impact of inflation, interest rates, poor performances of the economies in which it operates and the threat of cybercrime.

However, they said they consider the impact of these risks to be “limited”, through the continuous monitoring of the market, management of relationships with suppliers and the cost base and investment in the business.

The Smyths Toys group operates more than 100 stores across Ireland and Britain, as well as a number in Europe, with estimated revenues passing the €1 billion mark in 2021.

Established in the late-1980s as an offshoot of the Smyth family’s newsagents and toy shop in Claremorris in Mayo, the Smyths Toys group continues to be led from Mayo by the Smyth family, with brothers Anthony Smyth and Patrick Smyth sitting on the board. They were joined there until recently by siblings Liam Smyth, who died in July, and Thomas Smyth, who resigned as a director in 2021.

Ellen O'Regan

Ellen O’Regan

Ellen O’Regan is an Irish Times journalist.