Dixons Retail PLC Rises 7% On Positive Update


Dixons (LSE: DXNS) saw its shares shoot up this morning, putting on over 7% in early trade following a positive trading statement for the fourth quarter and full year.

Europe's leading specialist multi-channel electrical retailer and services company reported that pre-tax profit is expected to be at the top end of forecasts, around £75-£85m, with management commenting that "this strong year puts Dixons in the best position it has been in for many years".

This was greatly helped by a strong performance from its multi-channel businesses in UK & Ireland, Northern and Southern Europe, which saw like-for-like sales increase 7% across the year, and up a "very pleasing" 11% in Q4.

Chief executive Sebastian James commented:

"We have worked hard to improve the conversation that we have with our customers and to improve our shops and our prices. This is paying off as customers increasingly choose us when they need electrical products, and - more importantly - tell us that they like what we are doing. I believe that we have a clear business model that allows us to flourish in an internet world. I am very pleased to see us gaining share in nearly all of our multi-channel businesses across Europe and could not be more excited or proud to be part of this team."

There is work that remains to be done, though, with PIXmania trading continuing to be "very challenging" for the group, but positive actions are being taken including taking full control of the business back in August 2012, significant restructuring and disposals of Webhallen and PLS for around £15m.

Currently sitting at 39p at the time of writing, as recently as last year, Dixons' shares hit a low of 9.56p -- shareholders who invested in the company at that time would have seen their holdings multiply four times now. So it may pay to keep an eye on the group's continued recovery...

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