Discount retailer The Works has said it has achieved its strongest ever Christmas trading performance, with total sales up 15% in the 12 weeks to 24th December.
Like-for-like sales at the gifts, arts and crafts, books, toys and stationery retailer meanwhile were up 6.3% in the 12 weeks to 24th December 2017, while e-commerce sales were up 37% like-for-like, accounting for 10% of the total turnover for the quarter.
Last year represented a "milestone" for the business during which it opened 65 new stores to create a total portfolio of over 430 stores, the company said. During 2017 it also relocated its head office to a new purpose-built facility and distribution centre in Sutton Coldfield in the West Midlands, which helped the firm to make significant improvements in its supply chain to both stores and direct to customers.
Kevin Keaney, chief executive of The Works, said the company was "extremely proud" of delivering record sales in such "a challenging economic environment" and "against strong comparatives from last year".
"Our strong performance in the ‘golden quarter’ builds on what has been a series of successful previous quarters and keeps us well on track to deliver very strong full year results," he said. "In 2018 we’ll continue to focus on expanding our store portfolio, which continues to introduce our unique good quality, great value proposition to even more customers.”
Following a £5.3m investment in its 2017 store expansion programme, The Works plans to open a minimum of 50 new outlets in 2018, as well as explore new store formats.