Dunelm sales jump higher in ‘strong’ first quarter

Dunelm has hailed a “particularly strong” first quarter after it boosted sales on the back of new store openings and online growth.

However, shares in the company sank in early trading after it warned that trading in September was “mixed” due to a “softer homeware market”.

The retailer posted a 7.5% rise in total sales to £262.6 million for the three months to September 28, while like-for-like sales increased by 6.4% to £255.6 million over the period.

Dunelm hailed its “strong” performance during the period as it delivered gains in market share against a “weak” comparative period in 2018.

The company reported a jump in online sales and said the launch of its new digital platform will be an “important milestone” in the company’s development.

Online sales increased by 34.7% to £35.7 million for the period, while like-for-like store sales increased by 2.9% to £219.9 million.

The company said it had 170 superstores at the end of the period following the launch of a new site in Boston, Lincolnshire.

Nick Wilkinson, chief executive of Dunelm, said: “We are pleased with our performance in the first quarter, building on the strong growth delivered over the last year.

“Our customers continue to respond well to our specialist product and service offering and we are excited by the numerous opportunities ahead of us.

“Despite the recent softness in the homeware market and the increased political uncertainty, we are confident we can continue to win market share and our expectations for the full year remain unchanged.”

Shares in the company dipped 5.7% to 768.5p on Thursday morning.

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