Debenhams hails 'resilient' trading

A successful January sale and well-received spring ranges helped department store chain Debenhams make a “resilient” start to 2012.

Like-for-like sales at Debenhams, which runs 170 stores in the UK, Ireland and Denmark, increased 2.4% in the eight weeks to March 3 – significantly better than the flat performance in the previous 18 weeks.

The group hailed the popularity of its winter sale and its Designers at Debenhams labels, which include ranges by John Rocha and Jasper Conran and helped get its new season off to an “encouraging” start.

Chief executive Michael Sharp said he was pleased with the performance in the face of challenging conditions that have sunk several retailers and remained comfortable with the outlook for the next six months.

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