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Thriving Matalan plots expansion

Value chain Matalan is plotting 100 new stores in the next three years following strong annual results.

The retailer posted a 30% increase in operating profit before exceptionals to £132.9m for the year to February 27. Revenue increased 8% to £1.12bn and like-for-like sales rose 6.7% during the period.

The 205-store chain has opened three stores in Manchester, London and Scotland in the past year.

Chief executive Alistair McGeorge said: “This has been an exciting year for us, delivering very strong sales growth in a challenging market and we have recommenced our store openings programme.”

Matalan founder John Hargreaves attempted unsuccessfully to sell the business last year. A £525m refinancing package was subsequently put in place to fund growth and pay Hargreaves a £250m dividend.

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