Christmas boost for Card Factory, despite challenging environment

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Christmas boost for Card Factory, despite challenging environment
Credit: Shutterstock.com/ ValeStock

A strong Christmas period has helped ease a challenging trading environment and deliver revenue growth for Wakefield’s Card Factory.

For the eleven months ended 31 December 2018, the company posted group revenue growth of +3.4% (2018: +5.9%). This growth was driven primarily by new store roll out.

Like for like sales, meanwhile, were broadly flat at -0.1% (2018: +3.0%).

However, the company enjoyed an uptick in sales over the Christmas trading period, especially via its online presence with cardfactory.co.uk delivering revenue growth of +59.1% (2018: 65.8%).

The Board’s expectations for underlying EBITDA for the full year remain unchanged at £89 million to £91 million.

In a trading update, the company said: “In light of the current consumer and macro-economic backdrop, we anticipate that FY20 will be another difficult year.”

CEO Karen Hubbard said: “The Christmas trading period was challenging due to lower high street footfall.

“However, Card Factory performed robustly in this competitive trading period. As a result, like-for-like store sales have remained consistent and in line with our quarter three update in November.

“Although the Group has faced significant cost pressures in the year, these have reduced and we have been able to take mitigating action to maintain robust gross margins.

“Whilst we expect ongoing challenges from the consumer and macro backdrop, we continue to lead the market with our proposition, underpinned by our ongoing investment in our unique vertically integrated model which provides our business with significant competitive advantages.”