financial highlights

Overview of performance in 20231

 

The combination of a strong product line-up, high stock availability and outstanding customer service, alongside investments to drive future growth, all contributed to further market share gains in 2023.

Our established markets for kitchens and joinery in the UK are now estimated to be around £12 billion and we continue to seek further opportunities in adjacent markets. The focus remains on executing our strategic initiatives at pace to capitalise on this attractive, long-term growth opportunity, while selectively expanding Howdens’ differentiated, trade-only business model internationally.

Our robust balance sheet underpins our strategy as we invest in growth, including expanding our manufacturing and supply chain capabilities, and returning surplus capital to shareholders. While we are cautious about the macro-economic and geo-political environment, given the encouraging start to the year and the agility of our business model, the Board is confident in the outlook for 2024.

 

Highlights1:

  • Group revenue of £2,310.9m in line with last year’s record performance.
  • UK revenue was 0.7% below last year or level after excluding £14.4m of third-party sales associated with the acquisition of Sheridans in 2022, not repeated in 2023.
  • International revenue was 11.0% ahead of last year with continued expansion in France and the Republic of Ireland.
  • Gross margins broadly maintained at 60.8% despite higher cost inflation and the dilutive impact of growing the sales of everyday joinery products and solid work surfaces which both performed strongly. 
  • Operating costs well controlled at prior year levels, with cost inflation of around £50m more than offset through efficiencies. This protected our investment of another £53m in our strategic initiatives.
  • Strategic initiatives included 43 new depots across the Group, 89 depot reformats in UK, 23 new product ranges, further development of digital and upgrades to manufacturing and supply chain.
  • Profit before tax was £327.6m and included £17m of additional costs relating to a 53rd week. Before these costs profit before tax was down 15.0%.
  • Strong cash generation supported by a robust balance sheet with period end cash at £282.8m.
  • £50m share buy back completed in the first half.
  • Proposed final dividend of 16.2p, bringing the total for the year to 21.0p, up 1.9%.
  • The Science-Based Targets initiative recently approved our 2030 carbon emissions reduction target. We have also committed to set long-term targets consistent with our intention to reach net-zero by 2050.
  • Encouraging revenue trends since the period end. Group is on track with its outlook for 2024

 

1 The information presented relates to the 53 weeks to 30 December 2023, the 52 weeks to 24 December 2022 and the 52 weeks to 28 December 2019, unless otherwise stated. The 2023 and 2022 results are presented under IFRS 16, 2019 results have not been restated.

2 Comprises Howdens’ depots in France, Belgium and the Republic of Ireland (ROI).

£2.3bn

2023 Revenue (2022: £2.3bn)

£340m

2023 Operating profit* (2022: £415m)

£328m

2023 Profit before tax (2022: £406m)

 

60.8%

2023 Gross margin (2022: 60.9%)

46.5p

2023 Earnings per share (2022: 65.8p)

21.0p

Total full-year dividend per share for 2023 (2022: 20.6p)

Download 2021 annual report

2021 Annual Report

Download a copy of the 2021 Annual Report

Further Information

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Business Model and Strategy

Find out more about our business model and strategy, the markets in which we operate and our strategic approach to protect our unique business model and ensure that the business continues to grow.

Depots

As a familiar sight across towns and cities in the UK and Europe, our depots are always within easy reach, so a trade professional never has far to travel to find their nearest Howdens. Get to know more about how each one operates.

Sustainability

Our sustainable behaviour is at the heart of our business and enables us to reduce some of our risks. We take great pride in ensuring that our business positively impacts the world around us and the people within it.

Community

We are passionate about supporting the local communities we operate in, which is why our depots and support staff actively seek ways to give something back. Whether it is running half marathons or sponsoring local Scout groups, discover the many ways we help good causes.

Products

With around 80 kitchen ranges, our exclusive Lamona appliance brand, and thousands of products across joinery and hardware, learn why our builders have come to trust the range and quality of the products we offer.

People and Careers

The Sunday Times named Howdens as one of the top 25 big companies to work for. Discover why Howdens is a great place to work, how we develop our people and reward them, whilst building a culture with an entrepreneurial spirit.

Financial Results

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Governance

Howdens is a responsible business which was founded on the tenet that the Company should be worthwhile for all concerned, with a commitment to the people within its reach and the wider world. Here we provide the links to the framework that informs our decisions and outcomes.