Card Factory Set for Store Increase

Wakefield-headquartered Card Factory, the specialist retailer of greeting cards, dressings and gifts, has reported growth in both revenue and profit in its financial results for the six months ending 31 July 2015.

The car retailer’s overall revenue for this period was reported at £161.4m, which is around an 8% rise on the first six months of last year (£149.4m).

Underlying EBITDA also rose 7.7% to £32.5m (H1 FY15: £30.2m), as did underlying operating profit by 6.5% to £27.8m (H1 FY15: £26.1m).

Card Factory’s pre-tax profit also saw a significant increase to £24m, compared to a loss of £7.9m during the same period last year.

In addition, as at 31 July 2015 net debt had reduced to £109m, a substantial decrease from £146.7m in July 2014.

These strong results have allowed the card retailer to continue to push its store roll out programme, which saw the opening of 42 new stores in the first half of this year, bringing the total estate to 800 stores as at 31 July 2015. As a result, Card Factory’s like-for-like store sales grew by 2.7%.

Furthermore, the retailer’s brand Getting Personal, which is responsible for the majority of its online revenues, has continued to grow strongly, and in the first six months revenue increased by 24.9% to £6.9m.

Richard Hayes, chief executive officer, commented:

"It is encouraging to report another strong set of interim results with growth in both revenue and profit.  We continue to deliver on each of our four growth pillars: growing like-for-like sales, rolling out new stores, delivering business efficiencies and growing our online businesses.

"It is also pleasing to announce a special dividend, in keeping with our commitment to return surplus cash to shareholders.

"We continue to focus resolutely on maintaining our very strong competitive position and further improving and developing our value retail proposition.

"The business is well prepared for the important Christmas trading season, and we remain confident of the Group’s future prospects both in the near and longer-term."