- Safestyle UK downgraded its profit guidance after demand weakened further since its results announcement in September, with sales down 0.3% by value and 6.8% by volume.

"With sales in the short month of December not helped by severe weather disruption to the planned installation programme, it is clear that fourth quarter sales will now be below our already reduced expectations," the company said.

At the same time, sales had come at an increased cost of acquisition, due to higher lead generation expense in a competitive landscape and a higher proportion being made on extended finance terms, negatively impacting margins, it added.

"As a consequence, our 2017 full year outturn (namely underlying profit before tax, before exceptional restructuring costs and share based payment charges) is now expected to be below current market expectations, at a level of least £15 million." Looking ahead, the company also lowered its expectations for the financial 2018 year, by forecasting "only modest growth in earnings".

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