Debenhams has reported a solid Christmas performance, with like for likes down 3.3 per cent in the 12 weeks to 3 January. Total sales were up 1.1 per cent.

The company said it had gained market share in all its key categories. Gross margin was flat in the period, and the company said both pre-tax profit and EBITDA has increased over the period.

Debenhams said that own-bought ranges had performed better than concessions, with Designers at Debenhams performing particularly well. It said its decision in early 2008 to reduce the number of SKUs had paid off.

Chief executive Rob Templeman described the company's showing as "a creditable sales performance given the extremely difficult and volatile conditions."