Howdens grew by 5.4 % in the first half of the year

26.07.2019 − 

The turnover of the British kitchen furniture manufacturer and dealer Howden Joinery Group (Howdens) increased by 5.4% to £652.6m in the first 24 weeks of the 2019 financial year. Of this total, £638.1 million was attributable to the UK domestic market. This corresponds to an increase of 5.5 %. Adjusted for the opening of new branches in the UK, the increase amounted to 3.4 %.

Revenue from Continental Europe was £14.5m in the first half of the year, £0.2m down on the same period last year. Howdens explained the decline by withdrawing from the German and Dutch markets at the end of January, where the company had each operated a kitchen studio on a trial basis. In local currency terms, sales in the remaining continental European markets of France and Belgium improved by 4%. Following the opening of a new location in France, there are currently 21 Howdens studios in the country. There are two locations in Belgium. The opening of four additional French stores is planned for the second half of the year. For the year as a whole, the store network is to be expanded by around 40 new studios. In addition to the location in France, nine studios in Great Britain and five in Ireland were added in the first half of the year. At the end of the first half, there were a total of 708 Howdens stores.

The key earnings figures also improved in the reporting period. Operating profit rose by 11.6% to £77.7m and pre-tax profit by 13.5% to £78.1m. Operating profit was adversely affected, among other things, by costs of £5m from the closure of the two branches in Germany and the Netherlands. For the year as a whole, these costs are expected to amount to around £15m.

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