British retail giant Next has reported a 0.5 per cent rise in first-half profit and also raised its guidance for the full year as the heatwave led to stronger-than-expected sales.
The firm, which trades from over 500 stores in the UK and Ireland, also made a pretax profit of £311.1m in the 26 weeks to July 28 after full price sales rose 4.5 per cent. However, the company said that the UK retail market remained “volatile” and it remained “cautious” in its outlook.
“As it turned out, we did not experience any material loss of sales in August or early September,” the firm said, adding: “We believe the over-performance in the first half was flattered by the unusually warm summer and we remain cautious in our outlook for the rest of the year.”
Next said it is well prepared for Britain to depart from the European Union without a free trade arrangement and managed transition period.