A first quarter trading update from Travis Perkins shows that trading its consumer retail division remains relatively robust with like-for-like sales growing 2.9%.
However, the figure was a slowdown from last year’s 6.4% growth with the group blaming the timing of Easter which will fall in its second quarter results this year. It said that this timing effect suppressed reported like-for-like growth by approximately three percentage points.
The group added that underlying performance of both Wickes and Toolstation remained “strong”, with particularly good growth in the Wickes showroom offer, multichannel sales and the continued network expansion of both chains.
Across the wider group, which includes its general merchanting and plumbing & heating businesses, like-for-like sales grew 2.7%, whilst total sales increased 4.9%.
Looking ahead, John Carter, Chief Executive, commented: “Despite mixed trading conditions expected for the remainder of 2017, we continue to be confident in the longer term outlook for the building materials market and our opportunities to grow and outperform. We continue to invest to build upon the scale advantage we have created and to extend or develop superior customer propositions. These investments will enable us to improve cash flow and returns over the longer term.”