Signet’s festive sales creep up 1.8% in UK

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Group pleased with what it calls a strong performance.

Signet’s UK Christmas sales inched up 1.8% on last year’s figures, the jewellery retail giant revealed in a festive trading update.

Ernest Jones outperformed H Samuel with a like-for-like uplift of 2.3% over the festive period compared to H Samuel’s a 1.4% rise.

Signet chief executive Mike Barnes described the festive results, which covered the nine weeks to December 31, as a “strong performance”.

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Total sales at the group over the festive period were up 7.8% with its US division posting a rise of 9.2%.

Barnes said: “We are pleased with our holiday season performance, with same store sales up 7.8%. We believe our strong performance in both the US and the UK for the Holiday Season and year to date is due to the exceptional execution by our teams in both divisions. I would like to thank them all very much for their dedication and hard work.

“Our performance is built on the long term competitive strengths of the business, including the great customer experience which our teams deliver, the strength of our merchandise, our continued investment in advertising to support our store concepts and merchandising initiatives, and our US customer finance programs, which are highly effective in supporting our customers’ jewellery purchases.”

Group sales for the 48 weeks to December 31 showed an uplift of 9.4% on the year before, but the UK’s performance was poor compared with the US – the US racked up a sales increase of 11.6% compared to the UK’s 0.8%.

Barnes said that he believes the jewellery retail group is well positioned for the year ahead. He added: “We will remain focused on providing our customers with an outstanding experience and investing in the business to further our competitive strengths, in order to continue to create shareholder value.”

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