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Up for sale Aurum sees trading rise 11% in H1


UK-based jewellery retail group Aurum Holdings has continued to see sales grow this year after a strong 2010, results today confirm.

In the 25 weeks to July 24th 2011 the owner of the Mappin & Webb, Watches of Switzerland and Goldsmiths stores experienced an 11 per cent year-on-year sales rise on a like-for-like (LFL) basis.

This follows a jump in EBITDA of 53 per cent to £16.1 million and an operating profit growth of 85 per cent for its full-year period ending in January which prompted its owner, failed Icelandic bank Landsbanki, to put the business up for sale.

Aurum reported in its statement today that the sale process “remains on track” and that a market update will shortly be released by the group regarding its efforts to find a buyer.

Justin Stead, the company’s CEO, said that he remains confident of a “significant increase in sales and profit for 2011” and that Aurum’s continued growth in trading vindicates the company’s strategy in the midst of a difficult retail environment.

“Our commercial product and marketing strategies are well differentiated from our competitors and our relentless focus on the customer in all that we do is clearly resonating in the marketplace,” Stead stated.

Luxury goods have been selling remarkably well despite straightened financial circumstances for the majority of UK consumers, with other high-end British brands such as Burberry and Mulberry seeing sales soar recently, though primarily through international markets and tourist trade.

Aurum claims that its multichannel strategy, which has seen it introduce click & collect and updates to its transactional sites, has helped its recent growth, with e-commerce sales across both Goldsmith and Mappin & Webb rising by 24 per cent year-on-year in the first half of 2011.

Don McCarthy, Chairman of Aurum, commented: “The Aurum board is extremely pleased with this performance as the company goes from strength to strength driven by a team that remains focused on delivering a well defined strategy.”

Published on Tuesday 26 July by Editorial Assistant

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