Argos and Homebase profits suffer in subdued market

Suzie Neuwirth

FTSE 250 company Home Retail Group today announced that pre-tax profits were down 10 per cent, with plans to transform the Argos and Homebase chains in its portfolio.

Sales remained flat at £5.475m but pre-tax profits went down to £91m. Earnings per share dropped 11 per cent to 7.7p.

The UK retailer aims to “reinvent Argos” into a digital business rather than a catalogue-led business and will invest in Homebase store refits.

“The group delivered a solid sales performance and very strong cash generation despite subdued consumer spending,” said chairman John Coombe.

“With the group's strong balance sheet and clear strategies for both businesses, the board is confident that it has the appropriate plans in place and is recommending a final dividend of two pence per share, which together with the interim dividend of one pence per share makes a full year dividend of 3 pence per share."