Value retailer QD Commercial Group Holdings has posted increased like-for-like sales over the key Christmas period for the fourth consecutive year.
The group, which operates 51 stores under the QD, Cherry Lane Garden Centre, Thingmebobs and Lathams brands, saw sales up by 5.41% during the three weeks to Christmas compared with the same period in 2012.
QD sales by department for the period were up 24.5% (Christmas), 18.9% (plants, seeds etc), 10.9% (giftware) and 21.7% (grocery). Post-Christmas LfL sales on January 2 were 16.9% up year-on-year, the company reported.
"In common with many other value retailers, our trading position over the festive season has been encouraging given the presently flat state of the retail sector," said QD Stores Group managing director, Justin Farrington Smith. "While challenging conditions face our high street business, we saw a contrastingly strong performance from our leisure and destination sites."
QD suggests that the traditional British Christmas is as popular as ever as sales of real Christmas trees and outdoor lit objects were up over 30% on last year. Meanwhile, last August, the retailer reported a 4% year-to-date LfL sales increase with above-average summer trading driven by seasonally-adjusted promotions across its clothing, garden and leisure business.
The Norwich-based group operates eight Cherry Lane Garden Centres across eastern and central England, while there are 28 QD stores in town centre locations from the east of England to Doncaster in the north and Wrexham in the west.
QD anticipates next Christmas will be boosted by its new transactional online facility
that is planned to be operational by the end of March.
UK retail sales overall in December 2013 were up 1.5% compared with a year earlier, while LfL sales rose 0.3%, according to the British Retail Consortium.