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Trading statements

Findel on course despite additional investment

26 January 2017 09:14

Findel expects full-year profits to be within the range of current market forecasts despite the additional investment in marketing costs for recruitment at Express Gifts.

In a trading update for the 16 weeks since 1 October, the group said it had seen strong sales growth in the period of over 11%, up from 6.5% in the first-half.

Express Gifts, its largest business, had continued to perform well during this period which represented peak trading for the business.

Total sales were up by 14%, within which product sales were up 15.0%.

It added: "Our 2016 new customer recruitment target for Express Gifts was significantly exceeded, with the customer base ending the calendar year 13% higher at 1.56m.

"In addition, Express Gifts also increased customer retention through a number of actions including the improved websites that were launched in April 2016.

"In light of this success, further investment in recruitment activity will be undertaken during the final quarter of the financial year for the first time.

"The additional stock of good-value products purchased from the Far East in US dollars to support this TV and digital recruitment activity will produce a lower product margin as a result of the weakening of sterling.

"However, it remains a cost-effective recruitment method and will help to strengthen further the business's market-leading position as an online value retailer and its future prospects."

The group said Findel Education saw a continuation of its improving sales trends in this relatively quiet period in its year, with the year-on-year sales decline narrowing from 5.4% at the half-year to 1.7% in the second half.

Its warehouse consolidation project has now been successfully completed.

At 9:14am: (LON:FDL) Findel PLC share price was +6p at 207.5p

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