Financial News

  • 24 April 2014, 15:17

Travis Perkins Sales Up As Housing Market Warms

Building supply firm Travis Perkins has seen its first quarter like-for-like sales rise by 12.7%, after weaker trading in the same period last year.

Total sales in the three months to the end of March were up 14.2% on a comparable trading day basis.

The Northampton-based company has been boosted by the upturn in building work and the ongoing strengthening of housing sales.

It said the gains were made after the weaker trading period last year and growth of its market share.

The results come after Britain suffered wet and windy weather in the first two months of the year, which hampered building work.

The Office for National Statistics said construction output fell to 5.8bn in February, down 2.8% from January.

It said February's foul weather wiped more than a quarter of a billion pounds from the sector.

But the industry was expected to see renewed growth as repairs and renovations got under way.

Chief executive John Carter said: "All of our businesses recorded strong sales growth in the first quarter of 2014 and lead indicators for our different markets are encouraging ... and we remain on course to meet our targets set out in February.

"We are confident that the plans we have in place will support our drive to outperform our markets, improve earnings and ultimately increase return on capital."

Travis Perkins has more than 600 outlets across the UK, and specialises in supplying the trade sector.

Like-for-like sales in its general merchandise division rose by 16.6%.

Sales were up 6.9% in its consumer division, which includes the Wickes home improvement chain.

The company also saw a jump of 13.2% in its plumbing and heating business.

Travis Perkins entered the blue chip FTSE 100 index last June and its shares have risen by around 25% since then. Shares in the company were up more than 1% in early trading on Thursday.

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