Greetings card retailer Paperchase has reported a strong Christmas with like-for-likes up 3.1% in the five weeks to December 27.
Total sales increased 6.5% to £28.4m while online sales jumped 26%. Paperchase’s international concession sales increased 6.8% while margins across the business was up by 60 basis points.
In the period the retailer launched its partnership with Staples in the US and Paperchase chief executive Timothy Melgund said he was “very encouraged by initial results”.
Speaking about the partnership, in which its products are available in 1,000 Staples stores, Melgund said it has “bedded in effectively” and “we will see how it goes”.
Looking at further international expansion, he told Retail Week that the comapny is “opportunistic” and is always looking for potential new territories, but “we have big fledgling new businesses in a number of markets, which is probably enough for us right now. It’s all about resource and priorities.”
In the year to date, the 47 weeks to December 27, like-for-likes were up 3.3% and total sales up 6.9% to £108.7m. Online sales rose 29.8%.
Melgund said: “Paperchase enjoyed a strong Christmas trading period, ending a year where we consolidated our position on the high street as a key destination for design-led stationery, cards wrap and gifts.
“More of our sales were at full price during the year, proving our customers really understand and appreciate the innovation and value for money of our product offering.”
The retailer opened 11 new stores last year and refurbished three. Paperchase this year plans to open a “similar or greater number of new UK stores”, Melgund said. Last year it also opened five concessions in Europe and revamped its website.
“We are committed to building on our achievements last year and head into 2015 with real momentum,” Melgund said.