Online value retail and education business Findel updated the market on its trading on Tuesday, following the close of its financial year on 30 March, reporting that its performance was expected to be at the upper end of market expectations.
The London-listed firm said that was driven by strong growth in customers and sales at Express Gifts, particularly during its peak trading period ahead of Christmas.
While trading in the fourth quarter was quieter, in part due to changes in marketing activity, the business reportedly benefited from stronger collections and recoveries from its credit receivables to contribute towards overall operating profit growth of around 20% for the year as a whole.
The operational turnaround of Findel Education was progressing “well”, the board reported, with its core UK brands seeing sales declines narrow to 2% in the second half after a decline of 10% in the first.
“Around half of sales are now coming through online channels, up sharply from 18% at the start of the year,” the board said in its statement.
“Net debt ended the year at £74m, down by £7m from the previous year in part due to favourable timing differences, with the outflows from the legacy customer refund programme remaining on track.”
The group said it expected to announce its full year results on 6 June.