Revenue and profit at Halfords fell in the first half of the year, the bicycle and car maintenance retailer said today.
Halfords also announced today it had acquired independent garage chain McConechy’s Tyre Service in a £9.3m deal.
Profit before tax slipped 2.5 per cent to £27.5m in the six months to 27 September from £28.2m during the same period last year.
Revenue fell to £582.7m from £599.9m, a 2.9 per cent reduction.
The company said: “Growth from strategic investment, gross margin improvements and tight cost control partially mitigated the impact of a challenging retail backdrop and tough weather comparators year-on-year”.
Chief executive Graham Stapleton said: “In a period where retail sales were impacted by weakened consumer confidence, we are pleased to have successfully increased gross margin, kept a tight control over costs, and seen growth from our strategic investment.”
Halfords also said it had acquired McConechy’s which comprises 60 sites and 100 vans across Scotland and the north of England, providing tyre fitting and vehicle servicing for both retail and commercial vehicles.
Stapleton said: “The additional garages and vans increase our national presence and takes Halfords to within a 15-minute drivetime to over half of UK households. The vehicle servicing market is a £10bn market, but one which remains highly fragmented, offering significant scope for Halfords’ trusted and recognised consumer brand to grow its market share considerably.”
PwC advised Halfords on the transaction and Grant Thornton advised the shareholders of McConechy’s.
Shares rose 2.95 per cent to 157p.