H Samuel outperforms Ernest Jones in upeat Q3

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Signet UK sales up as group plans six shop closures before February.

Signet’s UK sales rose 1.9% in the third quarter, up $2.7 million or 1.9%, to October 29 with H Samuel outperforming Ernest Jones.

H Samuel delivered sales of $78.3m, up 3% on the same quarter in the previous year, achieving an average transaction figure of £61 excluding charms.

Ernest Jones meanwhile brought in sales of US$69.2m, up 0.6% on the year before with an average transaction value of £300 excluding charms.

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Signet is planning to close five H Samuel stores and one Ernest Jones shop between now and January 28, with no openings planned.

Overall, Signet presented what it called “strong sales” with total same store sales up 10.6% and total sales up 10.7% to US$710.5m. Income before taxes was US$42.1 million for the group, up US$30.1 million from US12 million the year before.

Signet chief executive Mike Barnes said: “Our strong sales and earnings momentum continued into the third quarter, with same store sales up 10.6% and an increase in earnings per share to $0.30, or more than triple the prior year comparable period. Our sustained positive performance is due to the excellent execution of our strategies by our team, and I would like to thank everyone at Signet who contributed to these results.

“We are pleased with the start of the fourth quarter, and with the majority of our sales ahead of us, believe the superior quality of our in-store experience, our well-tested merchandising programs, and the exciting new advertising support, have us well positioned for the remainder of the holiday season."

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