// Halfords Christmas sales rise 11.5% in 13 weeks to January 1
// On a like-for-like basis, sales were up 9.8% across its retail division, driven by a 35.4% boost in cycling sales
Halfords has witnessed a sales increase during the festive period after recording its “best ever Christmas week” thanks to the ongoing demand for bikes.
The retailer’s group sales rose 11.5 per cent in the 13 weeks to January 1, comprising uplifts of 7.7 per cent and 30.5 per cent across its retail and autocentre divisions respectively.
On a like-for-like basis, sales were up 9.8 per cent across its retail division, driven by a 35.4 per cent boost in cycling sales.
This was due to demand for adult mechanical bikes, as well as e-bikes and e-scooters offset “global container shortages and port congestion impacting availability”.
Halfords’ cycling business Tredz recorded a 51.2 per cent rise in like-for-like sales during its third quarter, while the retailer’s autocentres delivered like-for-like sales growth of 21.1 per cent.
Motoring sales declined 8.4 per cent on a like-for-like basis during the period against the backdrop of UK traffic volumes being down approximately 25 per cent compared to pre-pandemic levels.
Halfords said it was still reviewing its “position with respect to business rates relief and the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme”.
“We are pleased to have delivered a strong performance under hugely challenging circumstances, including our best ever Christmas week,” chief executive Graham Stapleton said.
“Despite a large reduction in traffic on the roads, our strategically important Autocentres business saw significant growth, with particularly strong demand for the services of our growing fleet of Halfords Mobile Expert vans.
“We are currently carrying out over half a million services and repair jobs on cars and bikes each month, and therefore continue to play an essential role in keeping the UK moving during this pandemic.”