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Wyevale sales up

Retail chain releases sales figures

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It has been a promising six months for Wyevale Garden Centres, which reported its interim figures on Tuesday (9 September). Sales for the 26 weeks ending on 29 June were up by 8.6 per cent to £110.3 million, compared with £101.6 million for the same period last year. Chairman Brian Evans commented: “The early spring season followed a similar weather pattern to last year. Trading in the months of March and April was particularly strong, with ideal gardening conditions. However, wet weather dominated during May, which had a detrimental effect on sales.” Chief executive Robert Hewitt added: “The rain came down in May and this was made worse by the sheds advertising heavily.” Like-for-like sales at the end of April were 1.3 per cent higher than the record sales achieved in 2002. May and June like-for-like sales were three per cent higher, due to the warmer weather in the last week of May and throughout June. Strong performers over the first six months of the year have been water equipment and water gardening products, with like-for-like sales increasing by 34.6 per cent and 12.9 per cent respectively. Wyevale has committed to fighting threats from the sheds and will have a blanket advertising campaign next spring. Evans added: “We are determined to fight the sheds, focusing on our range and quality of plants. We are able to expand other garden centres in our portfolio to provide larger retail space and we are seeking planning permission to develop these and realise their potential. “The retail industry is still fragmented and we continue to seek acquisitions of the right quality.” He added that the firm was gearing up to Christmas. “Following last year’s success of our upgraded merchandising concept at six centres, we are extending it to the majority of our centres this year.”

This article was first published on Horticulture Week

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