Dixons hails rebound in UK profit

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The owner of PC World and Currys offered some cheer from the embattled sector today as it posted a 15 per cent hike in UK & Ireland profits after a rebound in sales.

Dixons Retail Group, which has outperformed struggling rivals such as Comet and Argos in recent months, said underlying operating profits across UK & Ireland rose to £78.8m in the year to April 28.

It confirmed that the division’s sales turnaround in the final quarter - up eight per cent amid a full year decline of four per cent - had continued into the new financial year.

The robust UK & Ireland performance helped limit the impact of the eurozone crisis on its southern European arm, with wider group underlying pre-tax profits down 17 per cent to £70.8m.

But Dixons signalled more store closures that will reduce the current 557-strong estate in the UK to between 400 and 420 outlets, compared with expectations last year for 450 stores.