DIY retailer Wickes has produced stronger numbers for the half year to end of June 2021. In its first report since the demerger with Travis Perkins, Wickes revealed revenue growth up 33.1% on a like-for-like basis, and 22.4% on 2019.
Adjusted profit before tax increased to £46.5m ($64.2m), ahead of guidance of around £45m ($62.1m).
Reported profit before tax increased to £35.7m, reflecting the demerger and IT separation costs.
Capital investment and IT separation costs are weighted to the second half of the year and working capital benefit will partially unwind.
Wickes Group declared its first interim dividend - of 2.1p.
The company expects to deliver full year adjusted profit before tax towards the upper end of market expectations.
Commenting on the latest numbers, David Wood, chief executive of Kier said: "In our first set of results since demerger, we have delivered an increase in sales and profits as we continue to help the nation feel house proud.
“In Core we have gained further market share driven by the strength of our proposition and Do It For Me (DIFM) has been remarkably resilient despite showrooms being closed through to April.
“Throughout this period, our strong relationships with suppliers means that we have navigated inflationary pressures and raw material constraints well - and this remains the case.”
Turning to the wider home improvement market, Wood said that external factors continued to indicate strong growth opportunities.
“An ageing housing stock, continued property transactions and growing consumer confidence are all driving customers to improve their homes. In addition, the increased time spent at home has fuelled the desire to renovate and refurbish - not only from homeowners - but also amongst rental tenants and the millennial generation.”
He concluded: “While the immediate external environment remains volatile, we look to the future with confidence. We expect to deliver a full year adjusted Profit Before Tax towards the upper end of expectations.”
Despite the generally positive numbers the market did not respond bullishly – the Wickes share price was down 1.94% to 232.4p in early market trading.