Home shopping retailer Findel’s turnaround has started to bear fruit as pre-tax profit before exceptionals soared 53% to £10.7m in its year to March 30.

Overall revenue edged up 1% over the year, Findel’s first sales growth for three years. The advance was driven by a “very strong” performance from its mail order business Express Gifts. Sales at the business grew 8.3% over the year and have soared 19% in the first eight weeks of its current year.

The retailer has invested in reducing prices across the business. It has also improved its systems and credit scoring.

Kleeneze sales decline narrowed from 9.2% in the first half to 4.7% in the second. Findel said Kleeneze’s growth in distributor numbers alongside the introduction of new products, particularly within health and beauty, and new selling concepts such as party planning had helped improve performance.

Profits fell substantially at Findel’s online sports business Kitbag despite a sales uplift of 4.6% over the year. This was due to legacy issues, including unprofitable contracts which the retailer said it had taken action to address. In the current year Kitbag sales are down 9.6%.

The retailer has added new contracts in football such as Sunderland AFC and other sports including the NBA and NFL. It said it has “a strong new contract pipeline” ahead.

Findel group chief executive Roger Siddle said: “Overall, we are pleased with the progress that has been made and are particularly encouraged by the good start which has been made to the current year. We remain confident that we are following the right path to achieve improved shareholder returns.”