THE owner of retail stores Currys and PC World today unveiled a 25% fall in half-year profits.
DSG International chairman Sir John Collins said the group was well prepared for the peak Christmas trading season, but said it was “appropriate to be cautious” about consumer spending trends next year.
Group same-store sales rose by 5% in the 24 weeks to October 13, driven by demand for flat-screen televisions, laptops, and games consoles.
But underlying pre-tax profits fell to £52.4m after poor trading in Italy and the cost of promotions to clear stock at its PC World computing division.
In the UK and Ireland, like-for-like electrical sales rose by 6%.
But DSG said it had noted a “more subdued’’ market for white goods – items such as washing machines and refrigerators – after previous signs of stability.
But in computing, UK operating profits slumped by more than 60% to £14.8m with like-for-like sales growth of 2% after the impact of the PC World issues.
DSG welcomes its new chief executive – former Tesco online supremo John Browett – next week. The company hopes that a revived internet presence will boost performance during the festive season.
Sir John said: “This will be a Christmas for multi-channel retailers – and we are accessible to our customers everywhere, online and in store.”
DSG needs a strong second-half performance to meet analysts’ full-year profit forecasts of £311m.