The Entertainer has revealed record-breaking festive sales despite a “challenging Christmas” for the toy industry.
The 91-store toy retailer said like-for-likes including VAT jumped 7% in the five weeks to December 28 and total sales surged 12% against last year.
Click-and-collect sales rocketed 93% in the period.
The Entertainer founder and managing director Gary Grant said: “We’re extremely pleased with a solid performance in what has proved to be a challenging Christmas for the toy industry.”
Grant told Retail Week Christmas came late this year as discounting led shoppers to hold off until the last minute for the best deals. He added that by the year to November the toy market was down -2%.
“We found Christmas to be late and therefore October and November were tougher months. It was all about the last 10 days before Christmas and they were outstanding days,” he said.
Grant said The Entertainer managed to offset this by offering “the best range of toys” and working 24-hours to ensure stores were stocked properly.”
The Entertainer is not the only one to indicate that toy retailers struggled over Christmas as last week Mothercare blamed the “weak” toy market in part for lacklustre sales on its Early Learning Centre website.
Christmas is particularly crucial for toy retailers because they can make as much as 50% of their sales over the period.
The Entertainer plans to open 12 new stores this year and it has further plans to grow internationally after it launched its first store overseas in Dubai last year as part of its franchise plans to open 45 stores in the region.