Waterstones is eyeing international expansion as its turnaround progresses.

Boss of the bookseller James Daunt told the Daily Mail that its Amsterdam and Brussels stores are two of its most profitable.

He added: “They are two of our most successful shops. So it is rather odd to have just two isn’t it?”

Daunt is progressing with his turnaround of the Waterstones business. He said whether it returns to the black this year depends on Christmas trade.

Since he took the reins at Waterstones, following Russian oligarch Alexander Mamut’s £53m acquisition of the chain, Daunt has improved its working capital. It now has 25% more titles on shelves but is carrying overall 15% less inventory.

He is now focused on improving the shopping experience. It has dropped the deal it had with publishers that forced it to display the same shop window across its estate and now offers a different proposition in each store.

Waterstones is also adding related products such as arts and crafts to stores to make better use of its space. However, Daunt is keen to keep its existing 290 store portfolio.