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Total Group revenue of Carpetright decline by 7.4%
01
Jul '09
Carpetright plc, Europe's leading specialist carpet and floor coverings retailer trading within the UK, Republic of Ireland, The Netherlands, Belgium and Poland, announces its preliminary results for the 52 weeks to 2 May 2009.

Headlines

Group
• Total Group revenue declined by 7.4% to £482.8m (2008: £521.5m)
• Underlying profit before tax down 72.3% to £17.2m (2008: £62.1m)
• Profit before tax of £16.7m (2008: £59.5m)
• Underlying basic earnings per share of 18.2p (2008: 63.5p)
• Basic earnings per share of 17.6p (2008: 63.2p)
• Proposed final dividend of 4.0p (2008: 30.0p) making full year dividend of 8.0p (2008:
52.0p)
• Net debt at year end of £97.1m (2008: £57.5m)

UK and Republic of Ireland
• Total revenue declined 12.9% to £394.1m (like-for-like down 13.5%)
• Underlying operating profit decreased 73.1% to £15.6m
• Store base increased by 8 to 567

Rest of Europe
• Total revenue increased by 28.9% to £88.7m
• Underlying reported operating profit increased by 33.3% to £7.2m
• Store base increased by 12 to 128

* 'Underlying' excludes profit / losses on property disposals and other non-recurring items

Lord Harris, Chairman and Chief Executive, said: “I have said before that I expected my 51st year of selling carpets to be extremely challenging and it has proved to be the case. Market conditions and consumer confidence declined throughout the year, leading to a significant reduction in sales volume and profitability.

“Our principal markets of UK & RoI are in recession and the likelihood is that with unemployment set to rise,the housing market will remain weak. Although there have been a significant number of actions taken by the Government to improve the economy, we do not expect a return to more normal trading conditions for at least 12 months.

“Against this backdrop, we have been delighted by the first full year of operations in the new warehouse and cutting facility, which has provided additional capacity and enabled
us to pursue additional business with the large insurers and housebuilders. The acquisition of Sleepright and the continued growth of our European business ensure we are well placed to trade resiliently.

“I remain as passionate as ever about our business and am excited about the prospects for the Group when trading conditions improve.I am confident our strategy of providing a comprehensive offer with the widest product range, best prices and excellent customer service will support future growth.“

Carpetright plc

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