Revenue growth at electrical components quarter Electrocomponents levelled out in the final two months of the group's financial year, allaying fears that a stalling growth rate would stop altogether.
For the year to March 31st, the group has seen year-on-year sales growth of around 7% to more than £1.2bn, with the International division setting the pace with sales growth of around 9%, compared to growth of around 3% for the UK.
In the first three months of 2012, however, sales growth has eased to around 1%, with flat sales in the UK and International sales up 2%. Within the International business Continental Europe sales have grown by around 2%, North America by around 1% and Asia Pacific by around 2%.
Subscribe to MoneyWeek
Subscribe to MoneyWeek today and get your first six magazine issues absolutely FREE
The good news is that the overall picture is not a lot different from what it was in January alone, when group revenue saw an increase of 1%, with International revenue (which accounts for 70% of sales) rising by 1% and UK being flat; in fact, the performance of the International division seems to have picked up a bit.
The group's online offering is going great guns, and accounts for more than 60% of revenue in the UK and Continental Europe.
"This performance is broad-based, with all regions and both electronics and maintenance delivering growth, and is being driven by the continued development of our industry-leading eCommerce channel which will grow by 18% for the full year," revealed Ian Mason, Group Chief Executive.
MoneyWeek Interviews: Ed Wielechowski portfolio manager of the Odyssean Investment Trust
Ed Wielechowski portfolio manager of the Odyssean Investment Trust talks to Rupert Hargreaves.
By Rupert Hargreaves Published
Pension savers turn to gold investments
Investors are racing to buy gold to protect their pensions from a stock market correction and high inflation, experts say
By Ruth Emery Published