• Darty’s fourth-quarter like-for-likes jump 12%
  • Like-for-likes climb 16% in France
  • Group sales advance 12.8% during the period
  • Fnac and Steinhoff-owned Conforama have both tabled takeover bids 

Darty has reported a jump in like-for-like sales as Fnac and Steinhoff wait to hear whether their bids have been recommended by its board.

The French electricals retailer said group like-for-likes climbed 12% during its fourth quarter, driven by a 16% spike in its domestic market. 

London-listed Darty reported “positive like-for-like sales” and “strong web sales” in its Belgian business during the 12 weeks to April 30, but noted “small gross margin pressure from competitive market conditions”.

In the Netherlands, Darty said it experienced “warehouse IT system issues”, which adversely impacted profitability for the period. Like-for-like sales across Belgium and the Netherlands, where Darty has 137 stores, were down 0.9%.

Group sales increased 12.8% during the period, driven by a 16.2% uplift in France.

Last month, French electricals rival Fnac tabled the highest bid for Darty, following a frenetic bidding war with Steinhoff-owned Conforama.

Fnac’s third and final bid of 170p per share – equivalent to £914m – for Darty is still to be recommended by the board.

Speaking to Retail Week after its fourth-quarter announcement today, boss Regis Schultz said the Darty board was in the process of analysing details of the Fnac offer “to be sure that it is deliverable”.

He added: “After that we should see the Competition and Markets Authority coming back by mid-July to confirm that the sale can go ahead. That will be the next milestone.”

Schultz told Retail Week earlier this year that he welcomed the takeover approaches because the French electricals market needed to be consolidated.