SALES UP AT CARD FACTORY DESPITE HIGH STREET CHALLENGES

High street gift card retailer Card Factory has grown its sales despite a "challenging UK high street environment".

The listed group has reported a 5 per cent increase in revenue for the nine months ended 31 October 2019, with like-for-like sales growth of 0.9 per cent.

The retailer said this reflected new stores, online growth and "steady sales in a challenging UK high street environment".

There was an increase in average spend across Card Factory's stores, but like-for-like sales dipped in the third quarter due to weaker footfall.

The company opened 12 net new stores opened in the quarter, with 38 now launched across the UK and Republic of Ireland so far in 2019. It remains on track to hits its target of 50 net new UK and Republic of Ireland openings in the full year.

Chief executive Karen Hubbard said: "I am pleased with our year-to-date performance. Our ongoing focus on customer experience, and the quality and range of our card and complementary non-card products, has led to an increased average spend both in stores and online.

"This has helped us to substantially offset the effect of the lower high street footfall experienced in the quarter and the corresponding impact on our like-for-like sales.

"We remain on track with our new store roll out and are focused on pursuing other new growth opportunities and retail partnerships to extend our market penetration in the UK and overseas."