UK retailer Dunelm seeks to move on after Worldstores deal
(Adds background, details)
Sept 12 (Reuters) - British furniture retailer Dunelm Group
Plc reported flat annual profits on Wednesday after
taking an 8.9 million pound charge in its efforts to complete
integration of loss-making internet business Worldstores.
Shares in the company gained 4 percent after it reported a
4.2 percent rise in like-for-like sales for the year, bouncing
back from falls in the first half, and said it had now shut the
Worldstores websites and moved all business to its Dunelm brand.
Dunelm has been struggling to stay competitive due to
dwindling customer numbers at its more than 170 stores and the
protracted integration of the Worldstores and Kiddicare brands,
which it bought almost two years ago for 8.5 million pounds.
Chief Executive Nick Wilkinson said the company had now made
a total cash outlay on the Worldstores acquisition of 30 million
pounds, including goodwill payments to suppliers and trading
Dunelm, which sells curtains, beds and other home
furnishings, posted a pre-tax profit of 93.1 million pounds, for
the year ended June 30, compared with 92.4 million pounds
reported a year earlier.
Underlying pretax profit was 102 million pounds ($132.6
million) for the year ended June 30, down 7 percent year-on-year
hit in part by a 8.4-million-pound trading loss related to
integration of Worldstores which it bought two years ago.
"The UK retail environment remains challenging, but against
this difficult background we have traded in line with
expectations during the current financial year to date,"
"The acquisition of Worldstores ... has accelerated the
development of our multichannel capabilities, but the process of
integrating Worldstores into Dunelm has been substantial and has
reduced our focus."
Dunelm also hiked its full-year dividend by 1.9 percent to
26.5 pence per share even as it said the UK retail environment
($1 = 0.7692 pounds)
(Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi and Muvija M in Bengaluru;
Editing by Gopakumar Warrier)
First Published: 2018-09-12 08:31:18
Updated 2018-09-12 09:13:30
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