Carpetright has recorded a tripling of pre-tax profits in its first half as it halts the sharp decline in its European businesses.

The carpet specialist’s pre-tax profits increased by 252.6% from £1.9m to £6.7m for the six months ending October 25.

During the period like-for-likes in the UK increased by 6.5%, while like-for-like sales across the rest of Europe declined by 3.3% in local currency terms.

Carpetright has revealed local currency sales in its international businesses were “broadly flat” year-on-year in the second quarter, arresting a deep decline in the last 30 months that has hit its Netherlands business particularly hard.

Wilf Walsh said he was encouraged by an “increase in UK like-for-like sales, a return to underlying profit in the rest of Europe and a net cash position at the end of the period”.

He added: “We believe that, with a well-researched and well-executed strategy, we can begin to reshape Carpetright to ensure the business fully capitalises on its market leading position.”

Carpetright is nearing the end of a review into the business, which will involve it taking the brand more upmarket next year in order to target customers who would traditionally shop at John Lewis.

The retailer has also appointed Fiona Hilton to the newly created role of commercial director.

She will take up the position on January 5 and will be responsible for buying, marketing and digital operations.

Hilton has previously worked for companies including Liz Earle, Wolseley, Boots and Kingfisher.

Carpetright is also seeking to make a number of new appointments within its creative and visual design functions as part of plans to revitalise its brand image and product offer.

Carpetright profits triple in first half as it halts international sales decline