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House of Fraser posts like-for-like growth

Like-for-like sales at department store chain House of Fraser rose 5.4% in the third quarter, with the retailer posting healthy profits after making a loss last year.

In the 13 weeks to October 27 House of Fraser delivered an EBITDA of £3m compared with a LBITDA (losses before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation) of £1.3m in the same period last year. 

The department store chain reported a rise in sales with like-for-likes in the year-to-date up 2.9%. 

HoF said current trading had continued to be strong with sales for the first five weeks of the fourth quarter up 4%.

The business also managed to reduce debt from £280.0m on October 29, 2011 to £274.8m on October 27, 2012.

Online sales soared 50% in the quarter with cumulative online sales growth for the year now up 56.6% compared to last year.

Chief executive John King said: “The board is pleased with the performance over the third quarter and we continue to believe that the strategy to invest in our stores and online proposition as well as the further development of our product offering will drive future growth.”

However, he said it remained difficult to predict when economic conditions would improve, noting competitor activities had intensified in recent weeks.

“There remains three full weekends of shopping before the Christmas break and accordingly there is more opportunity to deliver sales growth compared to last year,” King added.

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