Covid-19: Dixons Carphone reports surge in demand for electrical items

Dixons Carphone has seen a 35% increase in sales of its electrical items in the three weeks leading up to 21 March, the retailer revealed in a trading update published today. The figures, which relate to the UK and Ireland, reflects a period in which people have been preparing to work from home and ensure they can continue their lives during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Online trading of electrical products was especially strong during those three weeks, growing by 72%, with shoppers increasingly reluctant to visit physical stores as the Covid-19 crisis has developed.

There was also a 10% like-for-like growth in sales of Dixon’s electrical items in the 11-weeks from 5 January to 21 March, with online sales of these goods increasing by 23% during the same period. Total sales growth for the entire group over these 11 weeks, including its international arm, was 4%.

“We have seen very good sales of equipment for home working (laptops, printers), for home entertainment (TVs, Gaming) and for home living (fridges, freezers, kitchen appliances),” the retailer confirmed.

The group hopes its online shopping capabilities can help offset the revenue losses of its physical stores, all of which have been closed in the UK and Ireland since 24 March following government direction that all non-essential businesses should shut.

Dixons stated: “Our large online operations remain open. Online trading has been very strong in all countries over the last two weeks as people have been preparing to work from home and use essential technology to continue their lives during the Coronavirus outbreak. Early signs are that this strong trading has continued since stores closed and will help to compensate for lost store sales.”

But the retailer does expect the estimated £400 million loss in revenue from store closures to adversely affect its full year profitability