Like-for-like sales at Primark improved following a weak Christmas trading period, and the retailer's profit margins are doing better after "a lower level of markdowns fuelled by a well-managed stock position".
Sales at Primark are expected to be up 7.5% at constant currency driven by increased retail selling space.
“Following a strong performance at the start of the financial year, trading was weaker in the weeks leading up to and over Christmas as a result of unseasonably warm weather across northern Europe," said Primark's parent company Associated British Foods.. "Cumulative like-for-like sales have improved since the January trading update and are expected to be level with last year in the first half after better trading during the period since then.”
Internationally sales in France were kept afloat with strong like-for-like sales. US consumers have responded well to Primark and thus, the value fashion chain will open a further six stores in the US later this year and a 70,000 sq ft store in the American Dream shopping mall in New Jersey in calendar 2017. In addition, Primark will launch its first Italian store in April in Arese, north-west of Milan, and a store in a mall north of Florence by summer 2017
ABF added that it was making a “significant investment” in its warehouse infrastructure.