// Travis Perkins Q3 sales bounce back thanks to a booming DIY market since lockdown
// Owner of Wickes & Toolstation posted a 3.9% rise in LfL sales over the 3 months to the end of Sept
// Travis Perkins expects annual underlying earnings to be in the upper half of City expectations, £222m-£261m
Wickes parent company Travis Perkins has revealed a sales bounce back in the third quarter thanks to a booming DIY market since lockdown.
The DIY and hardware business, which also owns the Toolstation fascia, posted a 3.9 per cent rise in like-for-like sales over the three months to the end of September – with growth of eight per cent last month alone – as Brits looked to repair and upgrade their homes.
However, Travis Perkins said larger building project work has been slower to recover, with new housebuilding and commercial construction still “some way below 2019”.
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This saw like-for-like sales at its P&H business grow by just 0.4 per cent.
Builders’ merchant sales also dropped 3.1 per cent in the quarter, while total sales were 3.4 per cent lower, after the group axed a number of branches since June, impacting around 2500 jobs.
Despite this, Travis Perkins said the boost from local trade activity meant annual underlying earnings was now expected to be in the upper half of City expectations for between £222 million and £261 million.
“We have reported a positive overall like-for-like sales performance in the quarter as our markets have continued to recover following the impact of the national lockdown earlier this year,” Travis Perkins chief executive Nick Roberts said.
He added: “Whilst local trade activity has recovered well, our trade businesses continue to experience a lag in recovery from larger housebuilding and construction projects.
“However, there are signs of increasing workflow across these sectors as underlying demand strengthens as businesses have adapted to new and safe ways of working that enable them to keep sites open during periods of local lockdown.”
Travis Perkins announced in June that around nine per cent of its workforce was being axed under plans to shut 165 stores, mainly focusing on smaller Travis Perkins sites.
The store closures saw its branch estate cut by eight per cent.
with PA Wires