- Greeting cards and gifts retailer Card Factory reported that sales since reopening had exceeded its initial expectations and said it would be accelerating its store reopening programme.

Sales realised from its stores had exceeded its initial expectations, with like-for-like sales since reopening down 21.6% (compared to an anticipated 50% reduction in the first month of reopening), the company said.

Although the number of in-store transactions had fallen, reflecting footfall levels, the average spend increased by 24.9%.

Online sales from both and continued to exceed previous year's sales, realising like-for-like sales up 68.9% for the current financial year to 19 July 2020.

Online like-for-like sales were up 120.7% during the period of store closures, from 23 March to 14 June 2020.

The company said would be opening a further 4 stores and anticipated about 9 store closures, resulting in about 1,013 stores by the end of the current financial year.

Aggregate revenue for the first half of the fiscal year was expected to be approximately £100m, down from £195.6m, with 'material impact from the 12 week period of store closures,' the company said.

At 9:33am: [LON:CARD] Card Factory Plc share price was +2.95p at 44.75p

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