Weak Wickes sales result in meagre growth for 2023


Wickes has seen a marginal increase in its profits despite a slight dip in revenue, which it has attributed to generally weaker sales leads this year.

The national retailer closed the 2023 financial year with a revenue of £1.55 billion, which is only a marginal 0.6% decrease over its 2022 revenue of £1.56bn.

Similarly, Wickes’s statutory gross profit was also down, but only by roughly 1.3%. It closed out the 2023 financial year with gross profits of £565 million, down from last year’s £572.2m. Additionally, Wickes said its design and install orders had also decreased by 1.7%.

However, Wickes saw a more encouraging 2% increase in its 2023 profit before tax figure, ending the year with a total of £41.1m, compared with last year’s figure of £40.3m.

In addition, the company reported an increase in customers using Wickes to fit kitchen and bathroom products, which it said has lead to “incremental spend on tiling, flooring and joinery, increasing the overall project value”.

The modest end of year results have been praised by Wickes’s chief executive, David Wood, as “another strong year of progress for Wickes”. He added: “Our robust trading performance, targeted investment programme and disciplined cost control have delivered profits ahead of expectations.  

“In the current economic environment, our unrivalled focus on providing great value and service has underpinned this performance. With this, I would like to thank each of my colleagues for their continued dedication and support, enabling us to achieve record customer satisfaction.”

Looking ahead to the 2024 trading year, Wickes said that the first 11 weeks of the year have been “roughly in line” with its 2023 results.

However, the company acknowledged: “The consumer environment for larger purchases continues to be challenging with weaker leads in the market for Design and Installation, resulting in new orders down single digits year on year.”

Despite this, the company said that it believes its business model and growth strategy will help Wickes be resilient in the face of the current difficult economic market. It also says that it believes it is well positioned to achieve growth over the rest of the 2024 financial year.

Recently, Wickes’s senior leader of apprenticeship schemes, Connie Collett, warned that the KBB industry will shortly face a mass exodus of installers, as approximately half of the installer workforce is likely to retire in the next five years.

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