B&M reported strong trading in all of its stores and is now on course to have 1,200 UK outlets thanks to acquiring multiple premises from Wilko.
B&M has raised its full-year profit guidance after posting a 16.1% rise in first half core earnings. For the six months to 23rd September, group revenue climbed to £2.55b, an increase of 10.4% on the previous year. This was driven by an increase in the number of customer transactions.
Pre-tax profits hit £222m, up from £201m the previous year, with the group set to open at least 125 new stores in the UK over the next three years, boosting sales by up to 20%.
B&M said all stores are trading well with positive transaction numbers and new space growth as it raised its EBITDA guidance to between £620m and £630m in 2024, compared to £573m in 2023.
The group has opened 13 new B&M UK stores. Along with 10 new Heron Foods stores and five in B&M France, this makes a total of 28 new stores. The company expects to reach not less than 1,200 B&M UK stores in total, far in excess of the 950 it advised in guidance in 2017. The company’s retail estate expansion has been bolstered considerably by the acquisition of a number of stores from collapsed retailer Wilko.
Chief executive Alex Russo said that the guidance gave B&M “the runway to at least double our size in the UK in the medium term, while France also offers sizeable long-term potential”.
He added: “All four of our channels of growth are delivering strong results, underpinned by our relentless focus on low prices, cost control, simplicity in everything we do and disciplined profitable growth. The agreement to acquire up to 51 ex-Wilko stores is a significant step which underpins our opening programme. Over the next three years, we expect to open not less than 125 new B&M stores in the UK, adding up to 20% to our sales area.”