Joules says recent store sales top 2019 levels

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Joules Group PLC (LON:JOUL) said store sales for the eight weeks since post-lockdown reopening are ahead of the comparable period two years ago.

The ‘British lifestyle group’ said its shops have performed ahead of management’s expectations after the third national lockdown, while it opened three new sites at Center Parcs’ Sherwood, Whinfell and Elveden.

READ: Joules says full-year numbers to be ahead of consensus

It said it was due to pent-up consumer demand as well as “the attractive, predominantly local” locations of the estate.

In the financial year ended 30 May, revenue rose 4% to £199mln mostly thanks to the e-commerce segment and the acquisition of Garden Trading in February 2021.

Profit before tax and exceptional items is anticipated to be £5.5-6.5mln, slightly ahead of current market expectations of £5.2-5.3mln.

Retail revenue, which includes e-commerce and store sales, increased 9% compared to the previous year, however stores plummeted 41% due to enforced closures during lockdowns helped by online sales accounting for 77% of the mix.

The wholesale channel was down 17% also because of restrictions.

Garden Trading has traded well and ahead of the board’s expectations, with revenues climbing 78% than the comparable period.

The AIM-listed group had net cash of £4.7mln at 30 May and £39mln of liquidity headroom based on facilities.

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