Despite a drop in overall profit in its half-year results, B&M said the company remains confident that sales momentum will continue for Q4.
In its latest set of results, B&M announced that profits fell by £40m during the latest financial period. This was despite a rise in sales. The retailer reported statutory pre-tax profits of £201m for the six months to September 24th 2022, down from the £241m it achieved during the same period in 2021. The fall was despite the group’s total revenue increasing from £2.268b to £2.309b.
However, B&M said the drop in UK sales of almost 1% to £1.892b was offset by a rise of over 18% in France to £184m and a 14.6% jump for Heron Foods to £233m, and that the company was encouraged by the first six weeks of the current quarter. For this period, the retailer said its like-for-like sales are up 2.5% in UK stores.
The report said that the rise “represents a significant increase in total sales over pre-Covid levels, and is against a backdrop of rising interest rates, increased cost inflation and declining consumer confidence”.
B&M said it will focus on retaining existing customers as well as gaining new ones and remains confident that its stores will benefit from consumers continuing to carefully manage spending during the cost-of-living crisis. Looking ahead, the retailer said it would “expect to retain many of these consumers into any economic recovery” thanks to a focus on long-term customer loyalty.
Chief executive Alex Russo commented: “Sales momentum is good as we enter a difficult period for the economy and consumers. Our value-based approach is winning with existing and new customers, and we will do our very best to help them weather the cost-of-living crisis. We are well positioned as we trade through the Golden Quarter and our strategy remains unchanged – a relentless focus on price and product.”
Alex Russo also expressed his personal thanks to outgoing CEO Simon Arora for his leadership of B&M. Alex was promoted to the position of chief executive from his previous role as chief financial officer earlier this year, when Simon Arora announced his intention to step down.