B&M emerges as Christmas winner with giant rise in sales

B&M. Picture by PA
B&M. Picture by PA

Discount retailer B&M has reported a sharp rise in third quarter sales, helped by record Christmas trading.

B&M posted a 22.7% rise in sales to £969.8 million in the 13 weeks to December 23, with like-for-like sales growing 3.9%.

The group said that the stellar performance reflects its new store opening programme, with 19 outlets added in the period.

Soaring inflation caused by the collapse of the Brexit-hit pound has pushed up the price of everyday items for hard-pressed shoppers and, in these conditions, B&M has thrived.

Boss Simon Arora said: "B&M continues to go from strength to strength.

"Despite the demanding comparatives from the very strong Christmas in 2016, our buying, supply chain and retail teams achieved another outstanding performance this year by doing what we do best, which is delivering great value for customers week-in, week-out."

B&M said it is confident that the group will meet market expectations for earnings in the year to March.

Last year B&M, which is chaired by former Tesco boss Sir Terry Leahy and mainly sells general merchandise, splashed out £152 million to take over Heron Food Group.

B&M wants to expand the 250-plus convenience store chain, predominantly found in the north of England, through the addition of between 10 and 20 new sites per year.