DFS warns profits will tumble with the sofa firm blaming hot weather and delays on made-to-order furniture
- DFS warns full-year profits will be less than last year, when it made £82.4m
- Order numbers have slowed ‘significantly’ amid recent warm weather
- The firm has also been hit by delays in its made-to-order items from the Far East
- Same store sales are down 4% for the year-to-date
The recent warm weather may have given BBQs, booze and electric fans a lift, but it did little for sofa stalwart DFS.
The furniture retailer said order numbers were ‘significantly lower than expected’ in the last three months, as sun-seeking customers steered clear of sofa shopping.
It warned today that – because of the slowdown, as well as delays in getting its made-to-order products shipped from the Far East – its annual profits will be lower than the £82.4m it reported last year.
DFS owns the Sofa Workshop, Dwell and Sofology brands and has sofa partnerships French Connection, House Beautiful and Joules
The disruption, which the group said was ‘outside of our control’, contributed to a 4 per cent tumble in core like-for-like sales for the 49 weeks of its financial year so far.
DFS re-emphasised today the tough trading conditions shaking many furniture chains, including weak consumer confidence.
DFS boss Ian Filby (above) will step down at the end of October to join Joules as chairman
The difficult environment has been widely blamed for dismal retail performances elsewhere this year, with furniture firms Multiyork and Feather & Black tumbling into administration, and Carpetright urgently closing nearly 100 stores.
The ever-acquisitive DFS scooped up a handful of stores and assets from its fallen rival Multiyork, shortly after scooping up Sofology the year before.
Looking ahead, DFS said: ‘We continue to expect that the furniture retail market will remain challenging over the next twelve months, given ongoing reduced consumer confidence levels, although we would expect some alleviation of current short-term demand effects.’
It added that recent improvements to its supply chain, plus expected progress at its Sofology, Sofa Workshop and Dwell brands, will ‘help mitigate’ the tough sales environment.
At the half-year mark, DFS’ pre-tax profits crashed 58 per cent to £7m, down from £16.7m at the same point a year earlier.
Today, its shares slid by more than 5 per cent in early trading.