Pets at Home reveals “exceptional” demand over lockdown

Pets at Home (LON: PETS) has reported a total group revenue growth of 5.1% to £574.4m in the six months to October.

Thanks to an “exceptional period of demand”, the group revealed a 4.2% jump in sales compared to the same period a year earlier.

The FTSE 250 firm said in a trading update that it has adapted operations well to be able to continue providing pet care to customers with minimal disruption.

The group has maintained an interim dividend per share of 2.5p. Looking forward, Pets at Home anticipates full-year underlying pre-tax profit to be in line with the prior year.

Peter Pritchard, the chief executive of the group, said: “In spite of the ongoing and wide-ranging impact of COVID-19, there is much to be optimistic about. The market in which we operate remains resilient, with recent changes to our work and leisure patterns supporting rising levels of pet ownership, a good proxy for future growth in both the underlying market and our business.

“We adapted our operations rapidly post the onset of the pandemic, and our focus on customer acquisition is underpinning market share gains across all channels and strong growth in our VIP and Puppy and Kitten clubs, thereby increasing the long-term opportunity of using data-driven, joined-up solutions across our range of products and services to drive customer share of wallet and lifetime value.

“We are introducing new ways to meet our customers’ needs across all channels, making pet care as affordable, convenient, engaging and flexible as possible, and our customer-centric pet care platform, underpinned by the most extensive and unique proprietary pet dataset in the UK and a true omnichannel backbone, provides us with significant competitive advantages.

“While we will continue to remain focused and agile in our execution, we are, more than ever, confident in the resilience and longevity of our pet care platform,” he added.

Pets at Home shares (LON: PETS) are trading -7.35% at 388,20 (0840GMT). 

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Safiya Bashir
Safiya focuses on business and political stories for UK Investor Magazine. Her interests include international development, travel and politics.