LONDON (dpa-AFX) - Kingfisher PLC (KGF.L) reported that its first half pretax-profit declined to 317 million pounds from 474 million pounds, last year, reflecting lower operating profit, including the impact of impairments reflecting revised future projections. Earnings per share was 12.2 pence compared to 18.3 pence. Adjusted pretax profit declined to 336 million pounds from 472 million pounds, last year, reflecting lower retail profit and higher central costs and share of JV interest and tax, partially offset by lower net finance costs. Adjusted earnings per share was 12.8 pence compared to 18.0 pence.
For the half year ended 31 July 2023, sales were 6.88 billion pounds compared to 6.81 billion pounds, previous year. Like-for-like sales were down 2.2%.
Thierry Garnier, CEO, said: 'Our LFL sales in first half were slightly ahead of expectations, against a backdrop of unseasonal weather and ongoing macroeconomic challenges in our markets.'
The Group updated fiscal 23/24 adjusted profit before tax guidance to approximately 590 million pounds. The Group was previously comfortable with consensus of sell-side analyst estimates for adjusted pretax profit of 634 million pounds.
The Board has declared an interim dividend of 3.80 pence per share, flat with the first half 22/23 interim dividend. The interim dividend will be paid on 17 November 2023 to shareholders on the register at close of business on 13 October 2023.
The Board also announced the return of a further 300 million pounds of surplus capital via a share buyback programme. The first tranche of the programme will begin in early October.
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