Bicycle & car parts retailer Halfords has blamed the tough economic climate for a 26.6 per cent drop in pre-tax profits in its preliminary full-year results announced today.
Takings over the 52 weeks to March 30th 2012 careered from £125.6 million to £92.2 million, a 0.8 per cent reduction in the company’s total revenue while the retailer acknowledged that, “retail sales in FY13 have been very disappointing so far”.
Revenue across its retail arm fell 2.3 per cent, though Halfords Autocentres reported a 12.9 per cent increase in sales over the period.
As like-for-like profits in the cycling and leisure department rose by 9.7 per cent, in store service revenue was up 22.6 per cent, figures welcomed by David Wild, Halfords CEO.
”In a challenging consumer environment we have made good progress in our key growth areas of Leisure, including Cycles, Fitting Services and Autocentres,” Wild said.
“Our success in these categories and our detailed market research demonstrates how customers appreciate the help and value we offer and our opportunity for further growth.”
A new turnaround strategy is in place at the company which promises to create 1,000 new jobs, while new schemes including ‘Friend of the Motorist’ are to be rolled out across its Autocentres.
Multichannel is another area that will see further development as the company recently released its new advertising campaign based on the ‘staycation’ through social media .
Looking ahead, Wild added: “Halfords continues to be profitable and strongly cash generative and we are seeking to maximise our performance in this demanding retail environment.”