The Works like-for-likes grow as CEO hails “solid performance”

The Works CEO
// The Works like-for-like sales up 3% in the 52 weeks ending April 28
// The sales rise is thanks to store expansion
// Despite the sales rise, the retailer’s profit before tax declined from £2.6m to £2.3m

The Works has revealed a three per cent uptick in like-for-like sales in the 52 weeks ending April 28, primarily driven by store expansion as well as in-store and online sales.

Despite the sales rise, the retailer’s profit before tax declined from £2.6 million to £2.3 million year-on-year.

However, adjusted profit before tax increased from £4.2 million to £6.7 million to reflect the “full-year impact of the post-IPO debt structure”.

Adjusted EBITDA for the period increased by 4.2 per cent year-on-year to £13.8 million, while the stationery, books, arts and gifts chain saw its revenue grow by 13.2 per cent to £217.5 million.

The Works said it had a net cash of £2.9 million by the end of the period.

The retailer opened 50 new stores during the year, which increased its store portfolio to 497, and now expects to open a further 50 stores in the current financial year.

The Works said its click-and-collect offer generated an “additional half a million customer visits”.

“Opening new stores remains our biggest driver of growth and we have taken advantage of the favourable property market by opening a net 50 new stores in the year,” The Works chief executive Kevin Keaney said.

“We delivered good like-for-like sales across all channels, as our continued focus on product newness and our nimble buying strategy enabled us to anticipate customer demand for current trends and seasonal ranges.

“Our solid performance was also driven by our multichannel proposition, which offers customers even more flexibility and convenience in how they shop.”

Meanwhile, The Works said it had been trading in a “challenging environment” in retail but said this presented opportunities for the business, particularly with regards to “affordable, good quality retail space”.

“We have a full pipeline of new sites and recent openings have continued to perform well,” Keany said.

“We also have exciting plans for Christmas, the key period in leveraging our differentiated customer proposition, by offering a wide range of new products at outstanding value.”

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