B&M European Value Retail raises profit forecast again as lockdown surge continues

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B&M European Value Retail (LON:BME) has raised its profit forecast and said sales had continued to grow strongly in recent months with customers also spending more.

The basic homewares retailer has been a clear winner from the changing shopping patterns during lockdown restrictions and revenues rose by 25.3% in the six months to 26 September with 23% like-for-like improvement.

UK stores saw like-for-like sales grow by 19% in the second quarter with revenues continuing to increase at the rate into the second half.

As a result, underlying profits for the half-year are now forecast at GBP285mln against a previous estimate of GBP250-270mln.

B&M has also accelerated its store opening programme with 40-45 new UK stores to open this year, most of which will be in the fourth quarter.

Babou in France (since reopening) and convenience chain Heron Foods have also both seen sales grow on a like-for-like basis, said the FTSE100 group.

Simon Arora, chief executive, noted: “Our group has performed well in the first half. Our business model is proving well-attuned to the evolving needs of customers, given our combination of everyday value across a broad range of product categories being sold at convenient out-of-town locations.”

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