Profits at Leicester-based tile giant Topps Tiles have dipped by almost 2% for the half year to 1st April.
The firm has revealed that adjusted profit before tax has dropped from £10.3m last year to £10.1m this year. Revenue also fell 1.3% to £106.6m.
Saying that full-year pre-tax profits looked to be at the lower end of market expectations, Topps said the sluggish performance was due to a weaker macro environment this year and a continuation of the particularly strong comparatives from the prior year when sales were boosted by changes to Stamp Duty.
Matthew Williams, chief executive, said: “Our results for the first half reflect the more challenging macro-economic environment we have traded through so far in 2017 and the strong performance we delivered in the corresponding period in 2016 when housing transactions were boosted ahead of the changes to Stamp Duty. While these tougher comparatives begin to ease from the end of June, the key macro indicators for our market are weaker year-on-year and we are taking a prudent view of the second half prospects.
“Against this background, we remain confident in the longer term outlook for the business, as evidenced by the 10% increase in the interim dividend. We will continue to focus on executing our proven strategy of ‘Out-Specialising The Specialists’ and to invest in important sources of future growth. In particular, our recently completed analysis of the UK commercial tile market has confirmed it as attractive and we are now evaluating a number of small acquisition opportunities to increase our reach into this part of the market”.