DIY group Kingfisher expects to report full year pre-tax profit at the top end of analyst expectations, despite B&Q being hit by the snowy weather in December.
Want to know more about Kingfisher?
For its fourth quarter in the 13 weeks to January 29, Kingfisher’s group sales were down 0.1%, or up 2% in constant currencies. Like-for-likes were up 0.6%.
It said the consensus suggests pre-tax profit will be in the range from £661m to £672m, and it will be towards the higher end.
B&Q total sales increased by 0.1% to £835m, while like-for-likes slipped 0.3%. It said the adverse weather temporarily disrupted the delivery and installation of kitchens. Total UK and Ireland sales, including Screwfix, were up 0.7% to £954m.
Ian Cheshire, group chief executive, said: “We have ended another challenging year in robust shape. Our programme of self-help initiatives has continued to deliver profit growth and higher returns whilst strengthening the business for the future.”
In France, total sales were up 3% to £896m, and like-for-like were up 2%. In its other international business, total sales were up 2.6% to £455m, while like-for-likes slipped 1.1%.
It said China delivered a profit in the period, traditionally the strongest trading quarter of the financial year, and the turnaround plan remains on track. Total sales declined by 21.5% to £106m, and like-for-likes slipped 16.2%.
Cheshire said: “Our international businesses delivered strong growth in the final quarter, more than offsetting some weather disruption and a weak market in the UK & Ireland, and so we expect to announce full year profits towards the top end of the range of analyst estimates.
“Looking ahead we will continue with self-help activity in 2011 as we complete our successful Delivering Value plan and start to mobilise the next phase of our development.”