Poor results at do-it-yourself chain B&Q have dragged down results at parent company Kingfisher.
Profits at Kingfisher slid 12.6% to £223m during the first half of the year after sales slumped at its B&Q outlets in the UK. Underlying sales at the chain fell 5.5% in the six months to the end of July, leading to a drop in profits of 42.7% to £82.6m.
Kingfisher, which has been expanding its international reach, increased overall retail sales by 6.6% to £4.3bn during the first half. Sales outside the UK rose by 16%, with underlying profits up 9%.
Gerry Murphy, Kingfisher’s chief executive, insists the management team is making progress turning around B&Q, with kitchens, kitchen appliances and tiles performing best. He says the chain has improved its ranges and marketed them more effectively.
However, Murphy predicts that the tough trading environment will continue into the second half of the year.