Travis buoyed by trading recovery

Builders’ merchant and Wickes owner Travis Perkins today hailed better than expected first-half results as the firm made a “strong rebound” from a snow-bound beginning to 2010.

The Northampton-based business is also set to recommence dividend payments for the first time in two years after like for like sales rose 3.4% in the six months to June.

The firm’s merchanting business has led the revival with like-for-like sales up 10.3% in the past two months, helped by housebuilding and maintenance activity recovering from a low base.

Conditions are tougher at the Wickes DIY chain but same-store sales are also on an improving trend, lifting 1.6% in the past two months compared to a 0.4% decline over the first half as a whole.

Travis is also targeting growth through acquisitions and expects to update shortly on its planned £553m (€670m) takeover of plumbing specialist BSS.

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Wesley O’ Regan is the General Manager of Popscene in Voodoo Rooms, Cork city. Popscene opened last November and is Cork’s only themed bar that is dedicated to celebrating the best of the 80s and 90s. https://www.facebook.com/PopsceneCork/You've Been Served: Wesley O'Regan, Popscene

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