The Works shares surge on strong H1 trading

The Works shares (LON: WRKS) have soared on Thursday morning after the group hailed strong post-lockdown trading.

For the 19 weeks ended 25 October 2020, excluding the lockdown, like-for-like sales increased by 10.6%. Including the lockdown when all stores were closed, sales fell by 7%.

“We have been encouraged by the performance during the period, which was better than the ‘base case” scenario we modelled when the Covid-19 pandemic was in its earlier stage,” said The Works in a statement.

“Performance in recent weeks has strengthened further and, we believe that to some extent, sales have been brought forward as customers have acted in anticipation of further restrictions.”

The retailer will not be issuing profit guidance for the full year FY21 currently due to the current uncertainty.

Gavin Peck, Chief Executive Officer of The Works, commented: “I have been pleased with the positive response of our customers to our proposition which resulted in strong trading since the reopening of our stores; the further improvement in performance in recent weeks only serves to underline this. I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the hard work and commitment of all colleagues throughout the business, who have helped to deliver this performance and ensured that we have continued to provide excellent service whilst maintaining safe shopping environments.

“Naturally, it is disappointing that we have had to close most of our stores again, so close to Christmas, but the strong performance since the last lockdown and our sound financial position mean we are well placed, and we are focussed on ensuring that we reopen safely, and are geared up to make up as much lost ground as possible in December.”

The Works shares (LON: WRKS) soared +28% on opening and are currently up 27.38% at 21,40 (0946GMT). Shares have fallen from a year high of 77.25.

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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.