Pets at Home shares surged on Friday morning after the group shared strong sales over the Christmas period and raised its full year profit guidance.
Despite voluntarily repaying the £28.9m in business rates relief, the retailer expects profits for the year to come in at £77m.
“While renewed Covid-related restrictions on a national level may constrain trade, we remain an “essential” retailer and the measures we continue to take across our stores, veterinary practices and online operations are ensuring we remain in a strong position to meet all of our customers’ pet care needs” said Pets at Home in an update.
As an essential retailer, Pets at Home has remained open over all of the lockdowns and has seen exceptional demand.
Peter Pritchard, the chief executive of the group, said last month: “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.”