Home improvement retailer Kingfisher (KGF) gained 6% to 331.3p as full year results offered further evidence of a DIY boom.

The B&Q-owner resumed its full-year dividend after reporting a rise in annual profit as higher sales and cost cuts boosted performance. The company has benefited from its ability to remain open in most geographies through lockdown.

For the year ended 31 January, pre-tax profit was £756 million, up from £103 million year-on-year as revenue climbed 7.2% to £12.3 million.

Like-for-like sales were up 7.1% with growth across all franchises in the UK & Ireland, France, Poland, Romania and Portugal, the company said.

FULL-YEAR DIVIDEND RESUMED

Full-year dividend payments were resumed with a proposed total dividend per share of 8.25p for the year, up from 3.33 pence a year earlier.

Looking ahead, the company is targeting to grow full year adjusted pre-tax profit in line with sales.

AJ Bell investment director Russ Mould commented: ‘Importantly, momentum has continued into 2021 thereby addressing a key concern in the market that people might have got DIY fatigue after a flurry of activity last year. The true test will come later this year when lockdown restrictions are hopefully removed, and people turn to outdoor pursuits.

‘Kingfisher will hope that households have had plenty of time to spot what needs doing to their home and broken gates, cracks in the wall and other problems will still be fixed even when life returns to normal.

‘In the meantime, a strong boost to earnings has allowed management to focus on sharpening the company’s proposition rather than having to answer questions from angry shareholders about why sales and profit were constantly falling.’

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Issue Date: 22 Mar 2021