International retailer Kingfisher is powering towards the demerger of its electricals division.
Electricals - including Comet in the UK and Darty in France - is likely to be split off in May or June.
Kingfisher will then concentrate on DIY, primarily B&Q and Castorama.
The retailer may exit peripheral territories, such as Canada, Brazil and Turkey, as it focuses on core European and Asian markets.
B&Q posted 8.8 per cent comparable store sales growth in the fourth quarter and a cost price reduction programme is under way at Castorama.
UK electricals rose 3.5 per cent like-for-like, but only 0.6 per cent internationally because of a 3.2 per cent decline in France.
Finance director Helen Weir said: 'What is really exciting is that it showed the two parts of the business outperforming the marketplace.'
Retail sales rose 10.8 per cent to£10.7 billion for the year to February 1.