Building materials supplier Travis Perkins said it made progress in the first quarter of the year although momentum was hit by a particularly rainy April.
Group revenues rose 4.4 per cent in the period from 1 January to 30 April 2012 from a year earlier. Total revenue in General Merchanting gained 6.1%, Specialist Merchanting climbed 6.3% while revenue at Plumbing & Heating fell 3.1%.
Travis Perkins commented, "After a good first quarter, record levels of rainfall contributed to a weaker performance in April and the early part of May where activity levels at sites continue to be impacted by the very wet weather."
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The group added that its increased focus on gross margins has yielded good results. Gross margin, before synergy gains, is in line with the equivalent period last year.
Meanwhile the integration of its acquisition BSS is progressing well and the synergy programme remains on course to deliver the £30m of gains this year.
"We have made good progress towards securing our targeted £15m property profit for the year. Due to the timing of contract completions in 2012 this gain is expected to be recognised in H2 whereas in 2011 the comparable gain to EBITA occurred in H1," the group explained.
Chief executive Geoff Cooper said: "We are pleased with the good progress in the first quarter, in particular the balance between continued share gains and our achievements on gross margins."
Travis Perkins said overall the outlook for the year remains unchanged and it is confident of meeting consensus expectations.
Underlying net debt was reduced by £50m in the four-month period from the £583m reported at 31 December 2011. It is on track to meet its £450m year-end net debt target.
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