After seven consecutive quarters of like-for-like growth, Dunelm saw sales decline in the final quarter of its financial year.
In the 13 weeks to June 28 sales of £89.8m at the out-of-town homewares retailer were 2.4% down on a like-for-like basis compared to the same period in 2007. However, total sales grew 7.7%.
For the year as a whole, Dunelm had sales of £391.8m, 10.5% up overall and 2.5% up on a like-for-like basis.
The company said it believed it had continued to gain market share through like-for-like stores.
Dunelm opened eight new superstores during the financial year, and now trades from 76 superstores and 13 older-format high street stores.
Seven new units are scheduled for the 2009 financial year or early in the next. The company has also embarked on a programme to refit older stores.
Chief executive Will Adderley was upbeat about the results.
“Whilst many home-related retailers are feeling an impact from negative macro-economic factors, Dunelm is more resilient than most – ‘simply value for money’ is more appealing than ever at times like this,” he said.
“As for the coming financial year, we have to assume that the market will continue to get tougher. However, we have a very strong balance sheet and healthy cash generation so we remain extremely well placed to exploit market weakness.”