Revenues at health & beauty giant Boots grew 4.1 per cent on a like-for-like (LFL) basis in the final five weeks of 2011, it has been revealed today.
In the financial quarter ending December 31st 2011 Alliance Boots, the retailer’s parent company, achieved a 14.1 per cent increase on group revenue LFL, spurred on by what Executive Chairman Stefano Pessina described as a “particularly good” performance by its UK retail division.
Boots UK’s retail revenue LFLs rose just 0.6 per cent including VAT while dispensing volumes were up 1.2 per cent against last year and division-wide sales, including Boots Opticians and other businesses, were flat year-on-year once the impact of VAT had been excluded.
As part of an internal note sent to staff today, Pessina said: “Despite the difficult trading environment, the UK retail division as we expected delivered good profit growth through a combination of effective gross margin management and tight cost controls.
“Looking to 2012, we expect the economic environment to remain tough with continuing pressure on both consumer and governmental expenditure. This will generate challenges but also new opportunities for us as we pursue our growth, organically and through further international expansion.”
Health & beauty retailers have been somewhat protected from the harsh economic winds over the winter months as cosmetics items become increasingly seen as essential purchases by consumers, with rivals Superdrug and Feelunique.com both reporting decent Christmas trading.
The wholesale division at Alliance Boots saw sales an impressive 21.3 per cent year-on-year during the quarter, and the group expects to hit all of its full-year targets.