Topps Tiles has reported a fall in interim profits but said it has gained market share and has made an “encouraging start” to the second half of its financial year.

The specialist retailer recorded an 18.8% fall in pre-tax profits to £5.2m in the 26 weeks to March 30, when sales edged down 0.2% to £110.3m.

In the first seven weeks of the new financial year, Topps said like-for-likes rose 1.2% versus a decline of 0.2% in the comparable period last year.

Topps Tiles chief executive Matthew Williams said: “The group has delivered a resilient first-half performance as we continue to consolidate our position as the UK’s leading tile specialist.

“Against a consumer backdrop which remains challenging, our trading performance was robust, underpinned by further gains in market share.

“Our commercial tile business continues to grow rapidly, with first-half sales more than tripling year on year. Expansion of the commercial division was accelerated by the acquisition of Strata Tiles in April.

“Strata is highly complementary to our existing Parkside commercial business and, together, the two brands provide the group with a strong base for further expansion into this large and attractive market segment.

“The group has made an encouraging start to the second half, with trading in the period to date continuing the positive trend seen in quarter two.

“While we are retaining a prudent view of market conditions for the remainder of the year, we remain confident in our ability to continue to extend our market-leading position.”