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The Works Posts Record Christmas Sales

+15% increase in year-on-year growth as discounter sustains strong 2017 momentum and announces plans to open at least 50 new outlets in 2018

Discount retailer The Works has today (Wednesday 17 January) announced its strongest ever Christmas trading performance, delivering record growth both in-store and online for a seventh consecutive year.

The company, which sells gifts, arts and crafts, books, toys and stationery, recorded total year-on-year sales growth of 15% over the 12 weeks ending 24th December 2017.

The Works' Christmas trading highlights included:

  • Total like-for-like sales growth of +6.3% for the 12 weeks up to 24th December 2017
  • Its highest ever turnover day, week and month
  • Ecommerce sales saw like-for-like growth of 37%, accounting for 10% of the total turnover for the quarter

This strong 'golden quarter' sales growth represents the latest achievement in a milestone year for the business, during which it opened 65 new stores to create a total portfolio of over 430 stores. Last year the business also relocated its head office to a new purpose-built office facility and distribution centre in Sutton Coldfield in the West Midlands. The state-of-the-art facility contributed to the positive Christmas performance by enabling the business to make significant improvements in its supply chain to both stores and direct to customers.

Kevin Keaney, Chief Executive of The Works, said: "Our outstanding Christmas performance is the crowning achievement in what has been another hugely successful year for The Works. To deliver record sales both online and in-store in such a challenging economic environment and against strong comparatives from last year is an accomplishment we are extremely proud of. Our success is down to our strategy of continuously delivering exceptional value to all our customers which ensured we were not forced into heavy discounting before Christmas."

"Our strong performance in the 'golden quarter' builds on what has been a series of successful previous quarters and keeps us well on track to deliver very strong full year results. Throughout the Christmas quarter we recorded some huge milestones for the business, experiencing record takings across our stores. In 2018 we'll continue to focus on expanding our store portfolio which continues to introduce our unique good quality, great value proposition to even more customers."

The Works has also bucked the trend of other discounters by making a success out of its multi-channel operations including new functionality from its ecommerce platform and growing Click and Collect service.

Following a £5.3m investment in its 2017 store expansion programme, The Works has already put forward plans to open a minimum of 50 new outlets in 2018, as well as exploring new store formats.

Alongside Kevin Keaney, The Works is led by Dean Hoyle, founder of Card Factory and one of the UK's best-known retail entrepreneurs, who joined in 2015 as chairman and investor. The Works benefits from having a very stable management team and board members include Chief Financial Officer Vicky Norrish, Tony Barraclough, former property director at Card Factory, and James Woolley, portfolio partner of private equity house and The Works investor, Endless LLP.

17 Jan 2017

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