Majestic Wine gears up for Christmas

Majestic Wine served up a modest increase in half year profit following the wettest UK summer on record as well as a tough economic environment and said it is well prepared for the key Christmas trading period.

Majestic Wine served up a modest increase in half year profit following the wettest UK summer on record as well as a tough economic environment and said it is well prepared for the key Christmas trading period.

Pre-tax profit increased 3.9% to £9.2m for the 26 weeks ended October 1st 2012 while sales excluding wholesale activities climbed 4.6% to £122.7m.

Total sales fell 1.4% to £126m and like-for-like (LFL) sales in UK retail stores rose 0.6%. In the six weeks from October 2nd to November 12th 2012, LFL at its UK stores rose 1.2%.

Online sales ,which represent 9.8% of UK retail sales, advanced 14% from the year before.

Commenting on the results Steve Lewis, Chief Executive, said: "These results, achieved in a challenging economic environment and the wettest summer on record, display the resilience of the Majestic business."

Majectic, which opened nine new stores in period and two since end of September bring total number of stores to 189, reported an 11.2% increase in active customers to 594,000.

Lay & Wheeler, its fine wine specialist, recorded profit before interest and tax of £506,000 compared to £292,000 in 2011. Majestic Wine Calais saw profit increase to £817,000 from £658,000 before.

The wine retailer, which has a minimum purchase to six bottles policy, has increased its interim dividend payment 5.3% to 4p per share.

CJ

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