Source - LSE Regulatory
RNS Number : 3679P
Dunelm Group plc
10 October 2019



10 October 2019


Dunelm Group plc

First Quarter Trading Update


Dunelm Group plc ("Dunelm" or "the Group"), the UK's leading homewares retailer, reports the following trading update for the 13-week period ended 28 September 2019.




Total like for like (LFL) sales increased by 6.4% in the first quarter with good growth across the total retail system. Total Dunelm growth was 7.5% including the benefit of new stores.  The beginning of the quarter was particularly strong, reflecting continued market share gains and the weak comparative period last year.  In September trading was mixed, in part reflecting a softer homewares market.




13 weeks to 28 September 2019




YoY Growth (£m)

YoY Growth (%)

LFL Stores1




Online -




Total LFL2




Non-LFL Stores3




Total Dunelm




Closed businesses4




Total Group






Comment from Nick Wilkinson, Dunelm's Chief Executive Officer:


"We are pleased with our performance in the first quarter, building on the strong growth delivered over the last year.  Our customers continue to respond well to our specialist product and service offering and we are excited by the numerous opportunities ahead of us.


"The launch of our new digital platform will be an important milestone in this phase of Dunelm's development.  Once fully live, we can really begin to enhance and extend our offering and customer experience.


"Despite the recent softness in the homewares market and the increased political uncertainty, we are confident we can continue to win market share and our expectations for the full year remain unchanged."


1 LFL stores:  stores trading for at least one full financial year prior to 30 June 2019 without any change of space. LFL store revenues include Reserve & Collect sales and Home Delivery sales in respect of orders placed via in-store tablets.

2 Total LFL:  LFL stores and The process for obtaining a refund for online purchases in store has been changed to minimise the risk of fraudulent returns. This process change has increased the attribution of refunds to the online channel. Total LFL is unaffected and therefore, as the business becomes more multichannel, is a more meaningful measure of overall performance.

3 Non-LFL stores: new stores (including relocations) opened in the current or previous financial year and existing stores with significant change of space in the current or previous financial year.

4 Closed businesses: sales from and These websites were closed in Q1 FY19


Gross Margin


Gross margin improved by approximately 130bps in the first quarter, mainly as a result of the lower levels of clearance stock compared to the prior year and the continuation of sourcing gains.  For the full year, we expect gross margin to be consistent with last year, with improvements in the first half likely to be offset by FX headwinds towards the end of the financial year.


Financial Position


The Group continues to be highly cash generative.  As at 28 September 2019, net debt was £24.0m (FY19: £109.0m) and weekly average net debt during the quarter was £5m.  The previously announced special dividend and FY19 final ordinary dividend will be paid during the second quarter.


Business development


We continue to test our new digital platform with a small percentage of our customers and are pleased with the results to date.  We are planning to transfer all traffic to the new website before Christmas but will retain flexibility within our transition plans to ensure we provide the best experience for our customers during the peak period.


As part of our focus on broadening and deepening our customer base, during the quarter we launched the latest adverts in our Home of Homes campaign, across TV, social and digital channels, with real customers illustrating the breadth of our offering and our customer base.  We have also rolled out a new POS till system across our store estate, improving the speed of service to our customers.


We opened a new superstore in Boston, Lincolnshire in July, which led to the closure of the two Boston high street stores.  At the end of the quarter, we had 170 superstores.  We have acquired the freehold of a new store at Cribbs Causeway in Bristol, which we expect to open before Christmas.



For further information please contact:


Dunelm Group plc

0116 264 4439

Nick Wilkinson, Chief Executive Officer

Laura Carr, Chief Financial Officer



MHP Communications

020 3128 8789



Simon Hockridge / Tim Rowntree / Pete Lambie


Next scheduled events:

The Q2 trading update will be on 9 January 2020. The half year results announcement will be on 12 February 2020.




1.     Prior year quarterly sales analysis (Q1 FY19 included Worldstores businesses in the total Group):



52 weeks to 29 June 2019









Total sales
















LFL Stores growth








LFL Online growth








Total LFL growth








Total Dunelm growth








Total Group growth
















Gross margin growth










Notes to Editors


Dunelm was founded in 1979 as a market stall business, selling ready-made curtains. The first shop was opened in Leicester in 1984 and over the following years the business developed into a successful chain of high street shops before expanding, following the opening of the first Dunelm superstore in 1991, into broader homewares categories. Dunelm is now a multi-channel retailer, with being launched in 2005 and the acquisition of the Worldstores Group in 2016 accelerating this further.   


Dunelm is market leader in the £13bn UK homewares market and active in the £11bn UK furniture market. It currently operates 170 superstores, of which the majority are out of town and trades online through Dunelm employs approximately 10,000 colleagues and sells around 30,000 product lines in store, increasing to around 55,000 online.


Dunelm, "The Home of Homes", offers a customer proposition of style, value, quality and ease of shopping. From its textiles heritage, in areas such as bedding, curtains, cushions, quilts and pillows, Dunelm has broadened its product range to a complete homewares offer including the likes of kitchenware, dining, lighting, seasonal, wall art and rugs. Dunelm is one of the few national retailers to offer an authoritative selection of curtain fabrics on the roll and owns a specialist UK facility dedicated to producing made-to-measure curtains and blinds.


The product range includes many exclusive, own brand designs and owned premium brands such as Dorma and Fogarty. This is augmented by a range of other well-known brands and license agreements.

Dunelm has been listed on the London Stock Exchange since October 2006 (DNLM.L) and has a current market capitalisation of approximately £1.6bn.



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