Halfords sustained its positive growth this quarter with bike and motoring sales rising out of last year’s rough patch.
In the 11 weeks to April 1 the chain enjoyed 3.1% growth in retail like for like sales, while group like-for-likes rose 2.6%.
Cycling sales increased 1.9% compared to the same period last year. This positivity follows a weak winter period, with poor weather conditions putting customers off prior to Christmas. The quarter was not fully positive, with bike clothing, accessories and parts sales declining. Over the full year, cycling sales slipped by 0.9%
Motoring enjoyed a 3.5% rise this quarter, against what Boss Jill McDonald called “tough comparatives”. In car “dash cams”, car cleaning products and travel equipment helped drive sales, and Halfords’ Autocentres managed to increase its own sales by 1.7%, making this its tenth consecutive quarter for growth.
“This was another good trading performance across the group,” said McDonald.
Halfords began to confront emerging issues with its technology offer this quarter. With the threat of more manufacturers selling “smart cars” that offer electronic functions traditionally sold separately, there is speculation that Halfords may move to modernise its services offer based on increased digital interaction and the internet of things.