Department store group House of Fraser enjoyed a strong second half year of trading last year and a positive start to its current financial year.
Figures seen by Drapers show that like-for-like sales excluding VAT in the second half of the full-year period ended January 26, 2013 were up by 4.5%.
Full year like-for-likes at House of Fraser were up 3.3%, with a small improvement in earnings, lower debt and a cleaner stock position.
Current trading was also positive with like-for-like sales, excluding VAT, for the first four weeks of this financial year up 5.1% with sales growth seen across all categories.
Web sales in the first four weeks of the year were up 44%.
According to city brokers Numis, House of Fraser’s cleaner stock position coming into the new year, means the group “has not suffered from additional discounting and has achieved a higher mix of full-price sales over this period”.
House of Fraser has been the subject of recent speculation regarding a potential takeover bid by sportswear mogul Mike Ashley. So far both House of Fraser and Ashley have declined to comment on any speculation.