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Primark sees bumper Christmas sales

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by Kay Mitchell
”Primark

Discount clothing retailer Primark joins other major retailers by announcing bumper sales over the festive period.

Primark’s parent group, Associated British Foods, said the chain is benefiting from consumers opting for cheaper clothes with sales particularly strong in the UK and Spain.

The group said: “Trading results for this period were very encouraging and ahead of our expectations. We expect good revenue growth and a significant increase in operating profits this year.”

First quarter sales (which cover the 16 week period to 2 January) were 19% ahead of last year, while overall sales growth for the group as a whole stood at 17%.

Furthermore, the budget fashion chain is expanding overseas and it is planning almost a dozen new stores, including a branch in Belgium.

Retailers such as Primark have been thriving during the recession and have been luring shoppers away from the more expensive retailers.

The results come just a day after fashion and homewares chain Matalan posted strong Christmas sales.

Matalan, which is traditionally based in out-of-town locations, said like-for-like sales for the 13 week period ending 2 January grew 9.3%, with like-for-like sales for the five weeks over Christmas and the New Year up 13.7%.

Matalan and Primark’s figures follow strong results from Tesco, Peacocks, Poundland, Co-op, Marks and Spencer, Next, John Lewis and House of Fraser, who have all announced bumper Christmas trading this week.

Earlier this week, the British Retail Consortium (BRC) announced that the High Street experienced the strongest December for eight years.

According to the BRC, like-for-like sales grew 4.2% by value during December as last-minute Christmas shoppers boosted sales.

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News posted: January 14, 2010

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