Halfords to beat profit targets after cycling and staycation boost continues
Halfords has said it expects to surpass profit targets after strong summer sales momentum driven by demand for cycling and staycations continued into September.
It said it now expects to post pre-tax profits above £55 million for the first half of the current financial year.
Earlier this month, the motoring and bikes firm revealed that sales jumped over the 20 weeks to August 21 as it was particularly buoyed by its strong cycling business.
It has now said that, despite the peak cycling season coming to an end, the “positive momentum continued” over the following five weeks.
We are well placed to address any headwinds we may face and capitalise on the tailwinds as they arise
Group like-for-like sales grew by 22% over the period to September 25, with cycling like-for-like sales rising by 46%.
The London-listed company also reported that its motoring retail business saw sales growth improve to 7.5% for the five-week period.
Meanwhile, the group’s autocentre business saw revenues grow “strongly” by 18%.
Halfords said it has launched a national campaign to recruit hundreds of skilled technicians as a result of the “substantial growth” seen in its stores and autocentres.
Despite strong trading, the retailer told investors it remains cautious in its outlook for the second half of the year.
In a statement, Halfords said: “The potential impact of second waves of Covid-19 now seems more pronounced than just a few weeks ago, and the economic impact of an end to the furlough scheme and the outcome of Brexit negotiations remains very uncertain.
“We are well placed to address any headwinds we may face and capitalise on the tailwinds as they arise.
“Our balance sheet and liquidity position remain strong.”