Carpetright is to buy Sleepright, the beds retailer which operates 94 concessions in its shops.

Carpetright also warned that trading remains tough, and posted a 12.5 per cent fall in like-for-likes at its core UK business in the 25 weeks to October 25.

Carpetright chairman and chief executive Lord Harris of Peckham said the Sleepright deal, which is likely to be completed by early December for a “modest initial cash consideration”, was in line with the retailer’s strategy of seeking to boost profitability by entering complementary markets.

He said: “The Sleepright format has been trialled successfully over the past 18 months, delivering incremental sales within the same floor space. We are now taking the opportunity to utilise the scale and infrastructure of the group to enhance Sleepright’s profitability.”

Carpetright’s total sales in the UK and Ireland fell 11.2 per cent. Its continental stores notched up a 12 per cent sales rise and like-for-likes advanced 2.3 per cent.

Carpetright reported that trading in October – along with November, one of its most important months – was “above the year to date trend” but still weak.

The retailer said: “Consequently, management have become more cautious about expectations for the full financial year.”

Harris expected harsh conditions to persist for at least another 18 months.

Seymour Pierce analyst Freddie George said although trading was poor, it was not as bad as some had feared. He provisionally cut his profit forecast by£5 million to£40 million.