Woolworths remains bullish despite drop in like-for-like sales

WoolworthsWoolworths Group has reported a dip in like-for-like sales for the 38 weeks to the end of October but the high street retailer remains confident that it is in a strong position for the critical Christmas period.

The retailer saw total group sales increase by 16.6% over the period due to acquisitions and new contract wins in its entertainment wholesale business but like-for-like sales dropped by 0.4%.

It says that its retailer business is “well set up operationally” for the festive period and the Worth It! Range “continues to perform well”. Sales at 2 entertain, its joint venture with BBC Worldwide’s publishing arm, increased by 14.5% due to strong sales of Planet Earth in the US.

Trevor Bish-Jones, Woolworths chief executive, says: “We have made good progress across all of our businesses in the year to date. We are confident that operationally the businesses are in good shape, with strong customer propositions going into the critical Christmas trading period. However, we continue to be cautious about the trading environment and have planned accordingly by focussing on the cost control, cash generation and margin enhancement.”

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