B&Q owner Kingfisher hailed a near 50% jump in annual profits – following a strong performance by its UK DIY business.
Kingfisher said adjusted pre-tax profits leapt to £547m in the year to January 30 against £368m in the previous 12 months.
Profits in the UK and Ireland soared by 64.5% on higher total sales as the home improvement market remained resilient. Kingfisher said its UK division, which also includes Screwfix, lifted total sales by 1.2% to £4.4bn during the year.
B&Q, which has a store at Leeds Road Retail Park in Huddersfield, lifted like-for-like sales by 1.3% amid stronger demand for outdoor products. Kitchen, bathroom and bedroom sales rose by 7%.
The retailer said improved merchandising, new ranges and the loss of several competitors helped drive B&Q’s market share at a time of weak demand for “big ticket” items.
Kingfisher said sales at Screwfix, fell by 4.3% to £471m as the trade market declined by 15% last year due to the recession.
The French division increased profits by 3.7% to £322m while the international division grew by 77.8% to £125m.
Group chief executive Ian Cheshire hailed a “strong improvement in performance”.
He added: “We remain cautious on the outlook for consumer demand across Europe. However, we are confident that our experienced management team, successful international strategy and buying scale mean we will be able to drive continued growth.”