• Half-year pre-tax profits up 10.7% to £75.5m 
  • Store likes-for-likes rise 3.4% to £376.9m
  • London a focus for store expansion

Dunelm has posted a 10.7% rise in half-year pre-tax profits, while sales were driven by a “strong” performance in curtains and bedding.

The soft furnishings specialist said profits before tax in the 26 weeks to January 2 hit £75.5m. 

Store like-for-likes climbed 3.4% to £376.9m. Total sales, including home delivery, rose 4.6% to £404.9m.

However, the sales lift marked a slight slowdown on its first quarter when like-for-likes increased 5.5%, while total sales rose 12%.

Dunelm, which has 151 stores, reported a “good performance in curtains and bedding”, particularly its new ‘Kids’ range. It also saw “good growth” in rugs and utility departments, it said.

Chief executive John Browett, who took over from interim chief executive Will Adderley last month, said: “After a solid performance in the first half, we had a strong sale after Christmas and we expect further good progress in the remainder of the year.”

In London, Browett said Dunelm is targeting more stores beyond its current eight. However, he said it recognises the capital as a “challenging market to penetrate”. 

Dunelm also revealed it has declared an interim dividend of 6p per share, up 9% on last year.