Kingfisher has upgraded its profit guidance after sales powered ahead of pre-Covid levels across its international markets.

The DIY giant said adjusted pre-tax profit for the first half of its financial year would now be in the range of £645m to £660m, outstripping previous guidance of £580m to £600m. 

Thierry Garnier, Kingfisher Group CEO

Chief executive Thierry Garnier said the business had made ‘positive progress’ with its Powered by Kingfisher strategy

Kingfisher, which owns B&Q and Screwfix in the UK, said like-for-like sales jumped 22.3% in its second quarter to date, compared to the same period two years ago. 

The group’s ecommerce sales almost tripled during the same period – covering May 1 to July 10 – up 188.2% on 2019 levels. 

Kingfisher said following “strong” two-year growth across all of its European fascias, like-for-like sales were now expected to grow 22% in its first half, compared to previous expectations in the “mid-to-high teens”.

The retailer has emerged as one of the winners of the Covid-19 crisis, as the millions of people forced to work remotely during the pandemic invested in home improvement projects.   

B&Q and Screwfix were highlighted among Kingfisher’s strongest performers in its second quarter to date, as like-for-like sales surged 25.7% in the group’s UK and Ireland division.

The only market to grow at a quicker pace was Romania where like for likes rocketed 40.2%.

Kingfisher’s French business grew 19.1% on a like-for-like basis, while Poland and Iberia delivered 17.8% and 14.1% growth respectively. 

Kingfisher boss Thierry Garnier hailed the “positive progress” the group had made on its Powered by Kingfisher strategy and said it had gained share in all of its key markets.

He added: “With very strong comparatives from the previous year, we are pleased to see growth being delivered on a two-year basis across all categories and channels, with ecommerce sales in particular nearly three-times higher than the same period in 2019.

“We continue to be encouraged by the supportive long-term trends for our industry and are confident of continued outperformance of our wider markets.”

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