Home shopping group Flying Brands has revealed mixed trading at its main businesses and acquired 50% of online promotions business Dealtastic.
Flying Brands reported sales up from £5m to £5.6m year on year in the three months to October 1.
However like-for-like sales at the gardening division fell 4% and total sales were flat because of difficult trading conditions in bedding plants.
Turnover at the gift division rose from £1.4m to £2m but that was “slightly behind expectations” because of the longer than expected disruption to the operations of Flowers Direct, which Flying Brands bought out of administration.
Previously expected to make a profit this year, Flowers Direct will make a “small loss”, while the Gardening Direct business will suffer lower than expected profits.
The retailer reported: “The improvements we have made in Flying Flowers and in Garden Bird Supplies should go a long way to making up for the underperformance of Gardening Direct. We are anticipating a much improved performance in the gifts division over the crucial Christmas period.”
Flying Brands said its acquisition of a stake in Dealtastic, “a company set up to exploit opportunities in web retailing and promotional activities”, was part of its efforts to put the web at the heart of its business.