• Adjusted pre-tax profit down 1.9%
  • Like-for-like sales dropped 1.9%
  • Group revenue fell 1.3%

Topps Tiles reported a decline in like-for-like sales and profits at the half-year mark which boss Matthew Williams attributed to “the more challenging macro-economic environment.”

The flooring specialist posted a 1.9% dip in pre-tax profit year-on-year to £10.1m for the 26 weeks to April 1, while like-for-like sales fell 1.9%.

The retailer, which reported a 1.3% drop in group revenues to £106.6m during the period, was up against strong comparatives as sales and profits were buoyed by changes to Stamp Duty the previous year.

Topps Tiles opened a net of eight new stores in its first half, taking its overall store estate up to 359 at period end and with a further 10 new store openings slated for the second half of the year.

The flooring specialist’s trade sales jumped 53.6% during the period driven by the retailer’s new rewards and trade loyalty scheme.

The retailer’s new employer brand also bolstered job applications, which increased 40%.

Challenging conditions have continued into the retailer’s second half, and Topps Tiles posted a 5.8% slump in like-for-like sales in the seven weeks to May 20, which it attributed to the later Easter.

However, the flooring specialist has said it expects its full-year pre-tax profits to be at the lower end of the range of market expectations.

Chief executive Matthew Williams said: “Our results for the first half reflect the more challenging macro-economic environment we have traded through so far.

“We will continue to focus on executing our proven strategy of ‘Out-Specialising The Specialists’ and to invest in important sources of future growth.

“In particular, our recently completed analysis of the UK commercial tile market has confirmed it as attractive and we are now evaluating a number of small acquisition opportunities to increase our reach into this part of the market.”