Comfortable trading performance at listed furniture seller

Furniture retailer DFS says it has achieved a strong order intake for the 26-week period to 26 December 2021, with its important post-Christmas trading period also starting positively.

The Doncaster-headquartered business adds that its gross sales have risen 10% compared to the FY19 comparator period, with delivery throughput accelerating across the half.

DFS says Covid-related absences, supplier manufacturing capacity and logistics performance, have affected both the furniture and wider retail industry, particularly in the first quarter.

But despite this, it has seen a strong increase in deliveries across the second quarter, with overall gross sales in quarter two 23% higher than in quarter one.

The business says it currently has “significant capital available to deploy”, and will be sharing its future investment and special capital return plans at its upcoming investor event on 15 March 2022.

Its update notes: “Manufacturing and logistics disruption remains a risk going into H2.

“However, the accelerated deliveries we have seen in quarter two as well as the on-boarding of new manufacturers and our recent investment in the Sofa Delivery Company, provides us with confidence as we enter the second half of the financial year.”

Tim Stacey, Group chief executive, said: “While the market remains hard to predict, we believe our scale, brand strength and integrated retail strategy will allow us to drive market share gains ahead of the competition.

“Looking ahead we will continue to invest in our digital platforms and our showrooms, our delivery network, our UK manufacturing capacity, and with expansion into other home categories, we are well positioned to succeed.”