Retailer WH Smith has launched an check of its under-pressure aerial artery business as it appear sliding sales and profits at the division.
The accumulation said it has kicked off a abundant analysis of the aerial artery business that will see it aing six food and wind bottomward trials such as its online agenda arm Cardmarket and accessibility abundance alternation WH Smith Local.
The aggregation affairs to aing the 20 Cardmarket food as their leases appear to an end, with afflicted agents appointment to adjacent WH Smith stores.
The WH Smith Local franchises – which are run as concessions aural absolute newsagents and accessibility food – will be anguish bottomward as affairs appear to an end.
WH Smith – which has 839 biking outlets and 610 aerial artery food in the UK – said the move was advised to ‘better anatomy the business for the future’.
Shares in the aggregation fell by added than 7 per cent in aboriginal morning trading.
The aggregation will additionally see a restructure of some operational activities and a renewed focus on amount ranges.
One-off costs of the analysis beatific accumulation pre-tax profits bottomward 4 per cent to £134 actor for the year to August 31.
But with these costs bare out, basal pre-tax profits rose 4 per cent to £145 million.
WH Smith saw trading profits in its aerial artery food abatement 3 per cent to £60 million, but this was account by a 7 per cent acceleration in profits at its biking arm to £103 million.
The accumulation said aerial artery like-for-like sales alone 3 per cent, although it said the ‘slime’ chic helped drive an ‘encouraging’ achievement in the final six months.
Sales rose 3 per cent beyond its outlets based in airports and alternation stations.
Stephen Clarke, accumulation arch controlling of WH Smith, said: ‘We had a acceptable year in aerial artery admitting the able-bodied accurate challenges of the UK aerial street.
‘During an auspicious additional half, the business traded able-bodied and we bound articular the latest trend in the market, acceptable a one-stop-shop for all slime-related products.
‘Despite this acceptable performance, we are not blank the broader challenges on the UK aerial artery and, during the additional half, we conducted a business analysis to ensure our aerial artery business is fit for purpose now and for the future.’
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