Interim Management Statement

05 November 2014

Howden Joinery Group Plc ('the Group') is today publishing its Interim Management Statement covering the period from the end of the first half of the year (14th June 2014) to date.

The Board is pleased to report that the Group has seen a good sales performance throughout the second half of the year, including during the important October trading period (period 11).

As a result of this, we now expect profit before tax for the year to be above the range of market expectations Note 1. However, it should be noted that the two remaining trading periods together typically account for over 10% of annual revenues.


Howden Joinery UK depots' total revenue in the second half of the year to 1 November (periods 7 to 11) increased by 16.2%. This was achieved in the face of toughening comparators that have been seen since the start of the second half of the year. As a result, in the first 11 periods (44 weeks) of 2014, ending 1st November, total revenue was up 14.1%, rising 10.6% on a same depot basis.

Gross margin performance has been in line with expectations.

Business developments

Since we released our 2014 Half Yearly Report in July, we have continued to make good progress in a number of areas of the business:

  • Depot openings: we have opened 4 new depots, resulting in 21 new depots in the UK so far this year and bringing the total to 580. We are on course to open 30 new depots as expected in the whole of 2014.
  • New product development: we have recently commenced a trial that enables us to sell granite worktops from stock in a very small number of depots - initial feedback has been encouraging.
  • Legacy properties: the lease of one legacy property has been terminated, at a cost of £3m. With one lease having expired in May, this means that there are six legacy properties remaining, with net annual rent and rates of less than £1 million.

Pension scheme funding

In an announcement made in June 2012, the Group gave details of the agreement with the trustees of the Group's defined benefit pension scheme in relation to the schedule of payments towards the scheme's deficit for the three years ending 5 April 2015. In line with the agreement, we now expect to make an additional one-off payment for the current pension year of £10m, which will be paid in 2015.

There have been no other material changes to the financial position of the Group in the period save as a result of the usual impact of the level of trading and those other matters disclosed above.

Note 1: The range of analyst expectations for profit before tax and exceptional items from continuing operations for 2014 is believed to be £161m to £172m.

Next scheduled announcement

The Group will release its 2014 Preliminary Results on 26 February 2015.


Gary Rawlinson
Head of Investor Relations

+44 (0)207 535 1127
+44 (0)7989 397527
Maitland +44 (0)207 379 5151
Greg Lawless / Angus Maitland


Note for editors:

Howden Joinery Group Plc is the parent company of Howden Joinery. In the UK, Howden Joinery is engaged in the sale of kitchens and joinery products to trade customers, primarily small local builders, through 580 depots. Around one-third of the products it sells are manufactured in the company's own factories in Runcorn, Cheshire, and Howden, East Yorkshire. The business also has a small operation in France.


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