Travis Perkins, which owns Wickes, reports a positive trading update for its first-quarter results. The British retailer has announced a 7.2% sales growth, and a 5.1% increase in its like-for-like sales today.
The building merchant and home giant had expected a decline in sales affected by the company’s deflating Plumbing & Heating division, but has instead enjoyed a strong two-year like-for-like sales growth of 18.4%.
John Carter, Chief Executive, comments: “The majority of our businesses performed well against strong comparators in the first quarter, driven by the investments we have made to improve our propositions in the initial stages of our five-year plan.
Our three priorities for the year ahead remain unchanged; the modernisation of Travis Perkins, the transformation of Wickes, and the re-segmentation of the Plumbing & Heating businesses.” Carter added. “The progress we are making underpins our confidence that the plans we have in place and the investments we are making will support further outperformance of our markets, medium-term double digit operating profit growth and continued growth in return on capital."
Strategic plans for progression include the opening of four new stores that are designed with updated open format concepts. Wickes received a positive response to its Click & Collect services, which operates collection pick-ups in just one hour.
Following the “successful” development of two heavy side range centres in Warrington and Cardiff, another two centres are being developed in Tilbury and Coventry. Tilbury is due to commence operations in mid-2015 and will serve around 130 Travis Perkins branches in London and the South East. The centre in Coventry should open in the first half of 2016 which will bring heavy side range centre coverage of the Travis Perkins branch network to over 90%.