B&M poised for international expansion despite flat UK sales

B&M France

B&M has posted a double-digit rise in revenues and profits as it positions itself to expand into “Europe’s three largest consumer markets”.

For the 26 weeks to September 29, the discount retailer saw group revenues rise 16.1 per cent to £1.56 billion, while its EBITDA jumped 13.5 per cent to £131.8 million.

Group pre-tax profits also saw a healthy 32.5 per cent rise to £115 million, up from £86.8 million a year earlier.

In the UK, where the group trades from 598 B&M stores, revenues increased 7.1 per cent, while like-for-like sales remained largely flat.

Its adjusted EBITDA in the UK also grew 12.1 per cent.

The company also trades from 269 Heron Foods stores across the UK, which saw a staggering revenue rise of 268 per cent to £175 million, alongside a 311 per cent rise in EBITDA to £9.9 million.

Outside of the UK, B&M trades from 90 stores in Germany under the Jawoll brand, which saw a modest revenue rose of 4.1 per cent, though its EBITDA dropped 80.8 per cent to £1.1 million thanks to clearance activity as it introduces more B&M sourced stock.

Alongside its domestic expansion drive, having opened 15 new B&M stores in the UK over the period, B&M has set its sights on international expansion after acquiring French retailer Babou last month.

“B&M has delivered a good first half performance,” chief executive Simon Arora said.

“The core B&M fascia stores made good progress and we have made a solid start in the second half of the financial year.

“Heron Foods has grown strongly in the UK, and in Jawoll the new management team is now utilising the B&M supply chain, with clear early signs that customers are responding positively to the new products.

“I’m delighted that having completed our recent purchase of Babou in France, we are now positioned to expand B&M’s disruptive, value-led model in Europe’s three largest consumer markets.

“With the core B&M UK business having had a record half year performance, we are well placed to prosper in a difficult and uncertain retail environment.”

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