‘Soft’ UK sales makes conditions slippy underfoot at floorcoverings giant

Floorcoverings business Headlam Group has continued to suffer from “soft” demand in the UK, although it believes it can still match expectations with a good performance through its traditionally-stronger second half of the year.

Like-for-like revenue in the UK was down 5.5% in the first six months of 2018, although sales on the continent improved by 1.8%.

These figures take into account the effect of currency. Total sales for the period, in reportable currency, increased by 0.6%.

In a statement, Coleshill-based Headlam said: “Trading during the first four months of the year was characterised by a soft UK market backdrop affecting revenue in both the residential and commercial sectors as well as a decline in revenue attributable to the company’s largest customer.

“These two features continued to affect trading to a similar degree through May and June 2018.”

However it confirmed it is “currently confident of delivering expectations” for the full year.

It has continued to make acquisitions, buying Dersimo BV and CECO (Flooring) in March, and Ashmount Flooring Supplies in London in July.

Headlam’s shares fell 30% in four weeks in February and March, although have since clawed back around one-third of the drop. Last night’s closing price of 460p gave the business a market value of £380m.