Wickes, Toolstation and Merchanting boost Travis Perkins 6 month interim results

Continued strong growth for Toolstation and a bounce back for Wickes helped Travis Perkins grow continuing group revenue by 6.9% in its six month interim financials.

Travis Perkins Merchanting also performed well, gaining share and helping deliver adjusted operating profit by 14.7% to £195 million, for the continuing group.

The period saw a £111 million asset write off relating to the ERP replacement programme.

The group noted a "subdued" market but said its measures - like simplifying its merchant businesses and empowering branch managers - had helped it "outperform the market".

CEO John Carter said: "I am delighted with the progress the Group has made in executing the strategy set out at the capital markets event in December 2018; to focus on our advantaged trade businesses and to simplify the Group. The P&H sales process is well underway, and we are today announcing our intention to demerge Wickes as a separate business.

"This strategic progress has been underpinned by a strong trading period in the first half of 2019 albeit against softer trading conditions in H1 2018. Our trade merchanting businesses have outperformed their markets, through continued focus on delivering excellent customer service, and benefitting from the leaner, lower cost organisation now in place. Toolstation continues to deliver excellent growth through proposition improvements and network expansion. Wickes has delivered a strong turnaround in volume and profit performance, with gains in both core DIY and through the Kitchen & Bathroom showroom.

"Whilst our underlying markets remain subdued, the self-help initiatives underway are supporting an encouraging improvement in performance and provide a strong platform to drive sustainable growth ahead of our markets in the medium term. Despite a cautious outlook for the near-term, the Group remains confident in making progress across the year as a whole."