- Commercial flooring manufacturer and international distributor James Halstead said it expects to report annual turnover and pre-tax profit at record levels following 'encouraging' second half performance.

'Early indications in February that international freight was showing signs of improving, in terms of cost and availability, was short lived and the chaos of the closure of the Suez canal has been matched by the turmoil in China and in particular the port of Yantain which handles vast amounts of international freight, the company said.

'It is apparent that the entire market has faced production issues and several of our competitors have had to suspend production due to material shortages. To date, we have not curtailed output and we believe this has helped us gain market share,' it added.

'In addition, it seems clear to us that while flooring retailers were closed, due to lockdown restrictions, our commercial flooring offerings (particularly in luxury vinyl tile) were used increasingly and significantly in domestic settings.'

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