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Demand for large TVs helps Dixons Carphone through Christmas period | Business News

By January 21, 2020 No Comments
Dixons Carphone owns Currys PC World and Carphone Warehouse

Dixons Carphone shares have stuttered after the retailer issued a correction to a Christmas trading update that had been well received by investors.

The company – no stranger to negative headlines following a hacking that targeted 14 million customers for which it was recently fined – had reported on Tuesday morning that demand for increasingly large televisions had helped drive sales.

Like-for-like sales growth was flat in the 10 weeks to 4 January – better than the 1% fall analysts had expected.

While many retailers struggled over the difficult Christmas period Dixons Carphone, which trades as Currys PC World and Carphone Warehouse in Britain, said total sales in its UK and Ireland electrical division were 2% ahead.

Total group sales were 2% up, it said.

However, six hours later it flagged a “clerical error” in the latter figure – saying it should have been 2% down.

Shares, which were 5% higher in early deals, later lost half that gain as some gloss was taken off what was largely seen as a positive performance.

Chief executive Alex Baldock said customers had “loaded up” with technology during the festive season.

He added: “The supersizing TV trend kept on giving as we sold 75% more 65″+ TVs.

“Dyson health and beauty sales were up over more than 20%, Shark Vacuum sales almost doubled and we sold 8,000 smart speakers each day.

“We broke records on wearables like Fitbit and Apple Airpods, while gamers couldn’t get enough of the Nintendo Switch.”

Mr Baldock has been steering the company since April 2018 and is working on a turnaround plan which would see a focus on electricals and a re-working on the mobile phones operation.

The mobile phones operation saw a 9% sales decline in the UK and Ireland, as customers increasingly keep their handsets for longer and opt for cheaper SIM-only deals.

Mr Baldock is also hoping to bring the stores and online businesses closer – online growth was 7% – while developing the company’s credit business.

He said: “We’ve had a good peak in a weak UK market and we’re on track to deliver what we promised for this year, and with our longer-term transformation.

“None of this would be possible without our thousands of capable and committed colleagues who work hard to deliver a great customer experience every day. I cannot thank them enough as together we continue to unleash Dixons Carphone’s potential.”

Dixons Carphone has 1,500 stores and 16 websites in eight countries, employing 42,000 people.

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