• Signet said total sales increased 5% to $1.95bn (£1.33bn) during the eight weeks to December 26
  • Like-for-like sales rose 4.9%
  • Retailer put down sales growth down to a combination of factors including new merchandising and marketing initiatives

Signet Jewelers, the parent company of UK retail brands H Samuel and Ernest Jones, said sales rose 5% to $1.95bn (£1.33bn) over the Christmas period.

Like-for-like sales increased 4.9% in the eight weeks to December 26. Signet attributed the sales rise to growth from its mall-based and outlet concepts in the US and its Ernest Jones stores in the UK.

Online sales rose 10.9% to $139.7m (£95m) during the period.

Signet’s UK division recorded a 3.9% rise in like-for-like sales, while total sales increased 4.9%. Splitting out its two British companies, Signet revealed that like-for-like sales at H Samuel were up 1.6% while total sales grew 1.8%. Its more premium outlet Ernest Jones recorded a stronger performance, with like-for-like sales up 6.9% and total sales increasing 9%.

Signet chief executive Mark Light said: “Signet delivered excellent holiday sales as a result of the successful execution of our product, marketing, and omni-channel selling strategies, as well as our superior customer experience. These results were driven by broad-based success across strategic store brands, merchandise categories and selling channels. The implementation of store operations initiatives in the third quarter combined with investment in our recently launched innovative merchandising and marketing programs positioned Signet well for a strong fourth quarter and beyond.”

He added: ”The continuation of strong sales and profitability combined with operating expenses that were in-line with expectations, including as-anticipated credit-related expense trends, enabled us to narrow our fourth quarter earnings guidance as well as our same store sales guidance to the top end of the previously provided guidance.”