Department store group Beales is poised to roll out men’s young fashion departments into all stores and make further acquisitions following a leap in pre-tax profits.

Beales generated a pre-tax profits rise of 67% to £909,000 in the 26 weeks to May 1. Revenue declined 1.8% to £26.2m, which chief executive Tony Brown blamed on a fall in sales of big-ticket items such as furniture in the run-up to the election.

Fashion sales were up 4%, driven by a strong performance of new concessions such as GIVe, Joules and Noa Noa.

Following the acquisition of Robbs of Hexham this month, Beales is also close to acquiring its 14th store. Brown said he would look to open two or three more in 2011.

Brown said he remained “cautious” about the full year but expected the top line to improve as consumers rush to make big-ticket purchases ahead of the VAT increase.