B&Q invests £69m in brands as sales fall

B&Q owner Kingfisher will be hoping that a £69m investment into own brand products and stores will help reverse a steep fall in sales and profit in the first three months of the year.

BQ

The DIY retailer blamed heavy rain in April for a 10.4% fall in UK sales at stores open for a year or more. Total UK sales fell 6.9% to £1.1bn in the three months to 28 April.

Profit fell 9.8% to £75m in the UK during the period, but B&Q remains confident that the poor start to the year won’t impact its full year performance.

B&Q is to invest £69m investment into its own brand ranges and UK stores earlier this week.

It will include revamps of the tiling and flooring and decorating divisions of all its and improvements to its ranges to make products more “trend led and fashion driven”.

Ian Cheshire, CEO, says: “We anticipated the first quarter would be challenging, compared with last year’s strong growth which was boosted by favourable spring weather and public holidays.

But an extremely wet April this year in the UK and France compounded the difficulty, adversely impacting sales of outdoor and seasonal categories.”

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