Kingfisher profits slump

Published:  26 March, 2013

Kingfisher has posted a big fall in profits after what it described as "a tough year".

Pre-tax profits for the 12 months to the end of January were down 11.4 percent to £715m compared with a year earlier.

Chief executive Ian Cheshire said: "We have had a tough year, impacted by unfavourable foreign exchange, record adverse weather in the UK and declining underlying markets in each of our three key territories. Looking ahead, although we expect market conditions to remain challenging...I remain very confident in our prospects, with clear initiatives underway to make it easier for our customers to have better and more sustainable homes."

Kingfisher blamed weak consumer confidence, unfavourable currency exchange rates and bad UK weather hitting sales of "seasonal products".

According to the group, “sales were down 2.4 percent across all markets”. In the UK, a wet summer was estimated to have cost B&Q £25m, with fewer customers visiting stores. The group also said “adverse exchange rates also affected profits made in euros or the Polish zloty when converted into sterling”.

Kingfisher is planning to boost profitability by buying more goods from cheaper sources, such as China.

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