In This Issue
Pet industry pays tribute to one of its leading figures
Pet Industry Federation responds to criticism over its stance on selling puppies in pet shops
Last chance to reserve a place at this year's UK Forum & Awards
Pets at Home shares dip following weaker-than-expected sales growth
New brand claims to introduce a revolution in dog food
£2,000 investment grants available to British companies exhibiting in PetQuip group at Global Pet Expo 2016
More export success forecast following Meet the Buyer
Billy + Margot launch a new 150g wet food
Foss Feeds wins star prize in Wagg's 'Spin to Win'
Grain-free treats added to Petface’s ‘Dog Deli’ range
Interpet celebrate after a successful and innovative AQUA
84% of vets give up time to work with animal charities
Restaurant plans for closed pet shop
Pet shop owner banned from keeping dogs
Former Pets at Home director joins Shop Direct as Operations Director
Ancol announces five-year partnership with Birmingham Dogs Home
Vets braced for pet ‘fright nights’ in November
ACANA sponsors top UK flyball team
Pets at Home open new store at cinema development
Americans spent $350 million on pet costumes at Halloween
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Pets at Home shares dip following weaker-than-expected sales growth

Pets at Home saw shares drop 8% last week following a report of weaker-than-expected sales growth in some areas. This was despite a number of new store openings and strong performance from its pet services offering.

Like-for-like sales during the first half saw growth of 1.8% compared with last year's 4.2%. Merchandise for the company was outperformed by services. Treatments like "pawdicures" – a pedicure for pets – and nutritional advice saw revenues go up 10.5%. Like-for-like sales for merchandise, however, was 1% compared to 3.7% during the same period last year.

Commenting on the results, Nick Wood, chief executive of Pets at Home, said: "Whilst trading in parts of the business has been weaker than expected, the core strategic drivers are performing well, and in order to support their growth we continue to invest in our colleagues and seamless shopping experience."

After the results were reported, shares fell to 286 pence – the steepest drop since the company floated in 2014.

Before the drop on Friday, Pets at Home had seen shares rise 86% in the past 12 months, and they rose sharply - by nearly four times – to £87 million in the year to March.

During the six months to October 8th, the company has opened eight new stores. Two of those were Barkers shops, the company's premium brand for "cultured canines".

Pets at Home says it plans to open more than 130 stores by 2016, as UK consumers have demonstrated their willingness to spend money on their pets.

The company believes that like-for-like sales figures were hit by unusually strong demand last year for anti-flea and tick treatments, due to the weather. This distorted sales of health and hygiene products.

"As we highlighted previously, profit growth will be weighted to the second half, as the strong health and hygiene comparatives ease. Our full-year profit outlook is broadly in line with market expectations," Mr Wood said.
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