John Lewis boosted by sunshine, linen fashion surges

John Lewis Partnership sales rose 3.6% to almost £210 million in the week to May 12 as the retailer managed to take advantage of the warmer, sunnier weather that has finally hit the UK.

John Lewis

Within that, the John Lewis department stores chain lagged the overall company slightly with only a 3.3% uplift, but that was a respectable rise nonetheless.

And fashion was a star performer with a 7.4% increase, led by menswear. Men’s fashion sales rose a healthy 10.4% and sales of womenswear weren’t far behind with a 9.3% rise as summer clothing and accessories finally began to shift off the rails.

The company said that "customers bought clothing for the warmer weather and took advantage of price matches on competitor promotions,” which means this will dent margins slightly. It all led to a record week for linen clothing, which saw sales rising an astonishing 108% year-on-year.

But interiors sales continued to be the underperforming master category with a 5.4% drop, despite “very strong sales of royal wedding memorabilia.”

It expects that uplift to continue this week as customers prepare to celebrate the wedding on Saturday.

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