Results driven by World Cup TV fever
Flatscreen TV sales in the run up to the Football World Cup helped boost first-half profits at all electrical stores in the Kesa Electricals group. The continuing trend for consumers to replace their TVs with newer models has given the group an optimistic outlook.

For the six months to July 31 Kesa reported profit before tax of£39.3 million, up 61.7 per cent from£24.3 million for the same period last year. Group revenue increased to£1.93 billion, up by 10.9 per cent from£1.74 billion.

Across the group, profits were helped by£6.1 million that the company received in premium as it exited leased premises.

'Overall, the Group delivered a very satisfactory performance in the first half, led by strong market conditions for flatscreen televisions,' said chief executive Jean-Noel Labroue.

At Comet, retail profit was£4.7 million compared with a loss of£1.7 million last year and like-for-like sales where up 8.4 per cent. However, this was helped by premiums received on exit from leased premises, principally£3.5 million relating to Fosse Park in Leicester.

In the second half of the financial year, the group has continued to show strong growth.

'Positive trading conditions have continued since the end of July, with a particularly good August, because of the underlying strength of the TV replacement market and increased demand for multimedia products in the back-to-school period. The white-goods market has returned to positive growth, but we will continue to see pressure on the margin mix,' added Labroue.

However, the company added the proviso that the outlook for the year, as usual, depends on Christmas sales.