Comet, the UK electricals chain owned by Anglo-French retailer Kesa, has posted like-for-like growth of 0.7 per cent for the period from November 1 to January 8.

Total sales at Comet rose 4 per cent in what chief executive Jean-Noel Labroue described as a “very challenging” trading environment.

He said: “The market conditions for our important peak trading period were difficult, particularly in the UK. However, all our businesses delivered revenue growth.”

Sales at the group, which owns chains on the Continent including Darty and BUT, climbed 9.2 per cent in local currency and 1.7 per cent like for like.

BUT, which is likely to be sold to a consortium including Merchant Equity Partners and Goldman Sachs, suffered a 1.7 per cent fall in comparable store sales.