Builders merchant group Travis Perkins has seen first half sales rise so much that the group is planning on reinstating the dividend paid to shareholders.
In today’s trading update for the six months since 31 December 2009, the group reports performance ahead of management expectations.
Group revenue for the six months ended 30 June 2010 was up by 4.7%, with like-for-like sales up 3.4%. Like-for-like turnover in the last two months was 10.3% ahead in the merchanting division and in the last nine weeks was 1.6% ahead in the retail division.
During the first half period merchanting revenue increased by 6.1% including like-for-like growth of 5.3%, compared to the same period in 2009. The increase was split 4.5% for General Merchanting and 5.8% for Specialist Merchanting. However, gross margins were slightly lower than last year.
Revenue for the retail division, on a delivered basis, for the 26-week period ended 30 June 2010, increased by 2.1%, with like-for-like sales declining by 0.4% compared to the same period in 2009. Wickes continued to gain market share and maintained gross margins over the period.
The statement said that, given then “pleasing trading performance in the first half” the group now anticipates re-starting the payment of dividends although initially these will be quite low, probably around 5 pence per share when then interim results are announced on 29 July
Chief executive Geoff Cooper said: “We are pleased with the overall progress the Group has made in the first six months of the year.
“Current trading continues to be ahead of management expectations and we now have the confidence to contemplate recommencing paying dividends. We expect to give an update on our discussions with The BSS Group shortly.”