Card Factory on track for 50 new stores

The chief executive of Wakefield BasedCard Factory said the general retail environment has "remained challenging" but the business remains on track to open about 50 new stores in the current financial year.

In the nine months to 31 October 2016 the retailer reported total sales growth of 4.4 per cent, compared to 7.9 per cent in the same period last year.

Karen Hubbard, Card Factory's chief executive, said:

"The general retail environment has remained challenging with adverse footfall trends impacting customer traffic into our stores.

"We remain wary of the uncertain outlook for consumer confidence, although we are pleased to note that, since the start of October, weekly sales patterns for everyday ranges in our stores have started to improve."

Card Factory opened 12 net new stores in the third quarter, bringing the total estate to 860 stores to 31 October 2016.

A statement by Card Factory added:"As referenced in our interim results, first half sales growth in Card Factory stores was softer than levels recently achieved as a result of lower retail footfall. 

"While weekly sales patterns in the second half to date have continued to vary, we have seen some improvement in sales of everyday ranges in Card Factory stores since the start of October."