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Gloucestershire Business News

"Positive start to 2019" reported by Travis Perkins

Travis Perkins have reported a "positive start" to 2019 with a rise in like-for-like sales of more than seven per cent, despite what it called "uncertain market conditions."

The group who also own Toolstation and Wickes reported that sales had grown 7.3 per cent on a like-for-like basis, while total sales had grown 5.4 per cent.

In its merchanting arm, like-for-like sales grew 10.6 per cent, while retail grew 10.0 per cent although there was a four per cent decline in revenue in the plumbing and heating arm.

Toolstation sales grew 19.1 per cent on a like-for-like basis while total sales at the retailer jumped 25 per cent thanks to acquisition and net new space.

Sakes at Wickes also grew, with a 10.6 per cent jump in like-for-like receipts, which the company called a "good recovery."

Although the statement did warn that "given current uncertain market conditions and the early stage of the year, overall expectations for 2019 remain unchanged."

John Carter, chief executive of Travis Perkins, said: "We have delivered strong sales growth in the first quarter of the year, which reflects both our focus on excellent customer service and the weak comparator in 2018.

"This performance is all the more encouraging given the impact of the on-going political uncertainty on our end markets.

"The Merchanting businesses have maintained the strong growth trend from the end of 2018, and Toolstation continues to grow extremely well, driven by network expansion and existing stores maturing.

"Wickes posted encouraging sales growth figures in both core DIY and showroom categories, demonstrating a strong turnaround in Kitchen and Bathroom performance.

"In Plumbing & Heating the milder winter has impacted sales compared to 2018, but our branches and specialist online channels have continued to perform well.

"The work to operationally separate Plumbing and Heating is progressing to plan and is expected to be completed in Q2.

"The actions set out at our capital markets day in December 2018 to deliver best in class service to trade customers and to simplify the Group are well underway.

"We are making good progress on cost reduction activities and expect to meet our cost reduction targets this year. Overall expectations for the Group in 2019 remain unchanged."

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