Halfords on target for distribution savings

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Halfords says it has successfully concluded its 18-month programme to transition its existing distribution centres to a more efficient and cost effective configuration.

In August the “Daily Mail” claimed that supplies to stores were being disrupted by problems at Halford’s new Coventry distribution centre.

In a trading update for the first half, the group said: “This period saw the successful conclusion of an 18-month programme to transition the group’s existing distribution centres to a more efficient and cost effective configuration, with the impact to sales during the transition period estimated to be about 1.4 per cent across the second quarter.

“On an underlying basis, excluding the estimated impact of disruption to sales, like-for-like sales declined by 4.9 per cent in Halfords Retail. Autocentres delivered a like-for-like revenue decline of 1.5 per cent.”

The opening of the new national distribution centre at Coventry is expected to produce annual savings of £4m.

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Chief executive David Wild said: “Halfords will deliver solid profit growth in the first half despite the challenging environment. We continue to improve our cost base and in the past few months have successfully addressed a number of company issues, such as the reconfiguration of our warehousing and distribution infrastructure.”

Group profit before tax for the first half is expected to be in the range of £67-69 million which represents, at the mid-point, year-on-year profit growth of 12 per cent.

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