Poundland's quids in with 11.7 per cent rise in profits

 
Emma Haslett
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The retailer floated in March at 300p (Source: Getty)

Shares in discount retailer Poundland edged 3.7 per cent higher to just under 314p after it posted a 11.7 per cent rise in pre-tax profits, which hit £9.3m in the six months to the end of September.

Sales rose 15 per cent to £528.2m, while net debt fell 83 per cent to £4.4m, as it announced an interim dividend of 1.5p.

The retailer floated in London in March at 300p per share, and remains one of the few high-profile IPOs in 2014 whose shares have remained above offer price. However, shortly after it listed, shares peaked at just over 400p, before sliding back down.

Poundland said it had opened 28 new stores during the period, increasing its offering to 556 stores, and was on track to open another 60 in its full year. It also opened its first Dealz store in Spain, and was on track to open a total of 10 by the end of 2016.

Jim McCarthy, the company's chief executive, said international expansion plans were "well underway".

As the structural changes in UK retail continue to redraw the landscape, we are building our reputation for offering value... and substantially broadening our appeal.

While our full year outcome, as always, is dependent on delivering a good Christmas for our customers, I remain confident of further progress throughout the year.

Shorecap analyst Darren Shirley said Poundland is a "retail winner in the medium-long term". "Poundland is basically ungeared and its strong balance sheet is a major virtue in our view".

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