Debenhams shares are going crazy after the department store announced record sales in the week of Christmas and a strong start to its financial year.
Sales from shops that were open a year earlier (a measure that excludes expansion) were up 3.7% in the 7 weeks to January 9, according to the latest update from Debenhams.
Sales in the 19 weeks to January 9 were up 3.5%. Transaction value rose by 2.5% and online sales by 12.1%. A reduction in discounting led to a 5% jump in full-price item sales.
It’s a stellar performance considering most retailers who have so far reported Christmas trading have disappointed, with NEXT shares falling to a 12-month low after blaming warm weather for a tough trading period.
Investors are lapping it up and Debenhams shares have popped over 15%.
Debenhams CEO Michael Sharp says in today’s statement:
We have traded well in the first 19 weeks of the financial year with a strong performance over peak resulting in a record Christmas. This performance is evidence that our strategy is working with our customers finding our mix of products and brands both compelling and great value for money. The further improvements to our service proposition and our online presentation have delivered strong multi-channel sales growth, building on the progress we saw last year.