Greetings card retailer Card Factory said sales grew 5.5 per cent in the six months to 31 July, despite a “challenging consumer environment”.
The company said like-for-like sales were up 1.5 per cent and total group sales up 5.5 per cent.
It opened 26 net new UK stores in the period and said it is on track for a target of around 50 new UK and Republic of Ireland stores for the full year.
Card Factory said it had incurred some additional costs related to the storage of increased stock levels, which included stockpiling to mitigate the potential impact of Brexit.
The company said it expects full-year profits to be in line with market expectations.
It said it expects a return of surplus cash to shareholders towards the end of the 2020 financial year.
Chief executive Karen Hubbard said: “Looking forward to the forthcoming key Q4 trading period, which will have a significant impact on the outturn for the full year, we believe we have the right ranges and products to deliver a good performance; although, we are cognisant of the economic and political uncertainty and weaker consumer confidence.
“The board anticipates profits for the full year to be broadly in line with its previous expectations."
Card Factory shares rose 3.7 per cent in early trading to 167p.