B&Q owner boosted by summer sun
KINGFISHER, the owner of DIY chain B&Q, yesterday reported a surprise rise in like-for-like sales in the second quarter, as cash-strapped consumers snapped up summer accessories thanks to a spell of barbeque weather.
Kingfisher, which also operates Castorama in France, said it grew its market share in the 10 weeks to 11 July, but that it remained cautious on the outlook for consumer spending.
“It’s tough out there, but a spell of barbeque weather and people’s renewed enthusiasm for DIY has clearly been helpful. But I believe it will be some time before we see more general spending improve in the wider economy,” said chief executive Ian Cheshire.
Analysts at Credit Suisse said the consensus consensus profit forecast for the group’s year to the end of January 2010 is now likely to rise to £420m, a 12 per cent increase.
This compares to a £368m profit the group reported last year.
At B&Q, sales at stores open more than a year rose by 0.7 per cent in the 10 weeks to 11 July compared to the same period last year. This beat an analysts’ consensus forecast of a 3.5 per cent fall. Sales at Castorama fell by 0.8 per cent, versus a consensus forecast of a 2.5 per cent fall.