WH Smith Group Profit Improves Despite Sales Decline
By Geetha Pillai | January 23, 2013 8:05 PM EST
Books and stationary retailer WH Smith has said its profits improved despite a fall in total and like-for-like sales as the firm faced tough consumer environment during the holiday season.
The company reported four percent decline in its total sales and a fall of five percent in like-for-like sales, in the 20 weeks to 20 January compared to the same period a year ago.
Like-for-like sales at its high street stores were down five percent while sales at the stores opened a year ago under the travel division fell four percent.
However, the retailer said well-managed margins and cost cutting measures both in high street and travel division stores had helped the company to strengthen its profits. It also expressed optimism in achieving further progress in the year.
"Gross margin improved strongly in the period in line with plan and costs were tightly managed, reflecting the trading conditions," said WH Smith in a statement.
"Looking ahead, we expect the trading environment to remain challenging however we are a resilient business with a consistent record of both profit growth and cash generation, and are confident in making further progress in the year," said the outgoing Group Chief Executive Kate Swann.
Swann will be succeeded by Steve Clarke, managing director of the firm's high street division effective 1 July.
The firm has wider presence at home and abroad with 600 town centre stores and over 600 outlets at airports, train stations, hospitals, motorway service stations and work places.
"Our new store development programme continues to progress well and we have identified further opportunities for growth both in the UK and internationally".
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Most Popular Slideshows
- NFL Recap - Week 4: Green Bay Packers 38, Chicago Bears 17 [PHOTOS]
- Derek Jeter With The New York Yankees Through The Years [IN PICTURES]
- Photos Of George Clooney And Amal Alamuddin, They Get Married Again On Monday [Slideshow]
- Taylor Swift's Famous Ex-Boyfriends: From Harry Styles To Joe Jonas [PHOTOS]
Join the Conversation
- 3 Signs Nexus 6, 8 Release Date Nears: Leaked Pics, KitKat Factory Image & Android L Details Emerge
- Samsung Galaxy Note 4 Available Through O2 For £380, Other Carriers To Follow Soon
- Apple iPhone 6 vs. OnePlus One: With Invitation-Only Model Rested, OnePlus One Can Be A Real Threat To iPhone 6
- ISIS Supporters are Walking Among the Many in the United States – Report
- New Windows OS Is Not Windows 9, Microsoft To Launch Windows 10 As New OS Build
- ISIS Receives Food, Ammunition Due To Mistake Of Iraqi Pilots
- Airstrikes Against ISIS Has Claimed Innocent Lives In Syria, Dubbed ‘Ineffective’ By Jihadi Fighters, US Military To Ask For More Spending Money