B&Q owner lifts profit view on pandemic DIY boom

Like for like sales jumped 22.5% on pre-pandemic period

The parent of home improvement retailer B&Q raised its profit outlook as it continued to benefit from robust demand during the Covid-19 pandemic. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

The parent of home improvement retailer B&Q raised its profit outlook as it continued to benefit from robust demand during the Covid-19 pandemic. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

 

Home improvement retailer Kingfisher on Thursday raised its profit outlook as it continued to benefit from robust demand during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The group, which owns B&Q and Screwfix as well as Castorama and Brico Depot in France and other markets, said like-for-like sales soared 64.2 per cent year-on-year in the three months to April 30th, its fiscal first quarter.

It said like-for-like sales were up 22.5 per cent compared with the same period two years ago – before the crisis started to disrupt trading last year.

Kingfisher said growth had slowed in its second quarter so far as comparative numbers got considerably tougher, with like-for-like sales up 8.2 per cent year-on-year in the period to May 15th.

The group raised its forecast for first half 2021-22 like-for-like sales growth to “mid-to-high teens” from “low double-digit” previously and now expects first half adjusted pretax profit to be in the range of £580 million to £600 million.

For the second half, Kingfisher maintained its guidance for like-for-like sales to fall by between 5 per cent and 15 per cent, given harder comparative numbers and uncertainty over the macroeconomic and consumer environment.

For the full year the group is now aiming to grow adjusted pretax profit, excluding £85 million of non-recurring cost savings, “ahead of sales”. Its previous guidance was “in line with sales”.

It made £786 million in 2020-21. – Reuters