Friday 12 June 2020 8:18 am

Games Workshop coronavirus recovery going 'better than expected'

Warhammer maker Games Workshop struck an optimistic tone this morning, as it said its recovery since reopening stores around the world has been better than expected.

Shares in the London listed company rose 6.5 per cent this morning as it said it expects sales for the year to the end of May to be about £270m, while pre-tax profit should come in at £85m.

Read more: Games Workshop forecasts profit fall as it secures £25m overdraft

At the end of May, Games Workshop’s cash balance was about £50m and it said it has also put in place a £25m overdraft facility.

Like many businesses, the group has been claiming cash from the government over the furlough period, but said it hopes to repay that over time.

The positive response will go some way to allay fears that the coronavirus would be a major setback for the firm, which has enjoyed a steady run of success in recent years.

It achieved the second highest growth in value of any FTSE 250 company during the 2010s, recording a 2,630 per cent return on shareholder value.

Last year bosses shared out a £5m among staff, handing them £2,500 each.

The company said that after a period of sustained closure, its warehouses are now operational again, and its factory is working in a limited capacity, complying with social distancing rules. 

Some 306 of its 532 stores are now open in 20 countries, and Games Workshop said it would continue to reopen sites as lockdown eases.

Read more: Warhammer creator Games Workshop shares hit record high after bumper first half

Trade and online sales orders are also being processed as these staff currently work from home, it added.

“In relation to the future performance of the group, the board feels that it is too early to know what the continuing impact of Covid-19 is likely to be,” it said.