Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 22°C

min temp: 16°C

Search

The pigs have arrived. See the latest

Pigs Gone Wild

news here.

UK: Losses fall as cooker sales heat up

16:34 23 August 2014

Glossy

Photograph Simon Parker 12/5/2010



The new showroom at Martin Melville Plumbing in Martlesham showing the Aga, Rayburn and kitchen wares



MyPhotos24 Ref - SP 010 Melville Plumbing 6

Glossy Photograph Simon Parker 12/5/2010 The new showroom at Martin Melville Plumbing in Martlesham showing the Aga, Rayburn and kitchen wares MyPhotos24 Ref - SP 010 Melville Plumbing 6

Cast-iron cooker maker AGA Rangemaster said the appetite of British householders for buying kitchen appliances was growing despite uncertainties around interest rates and the mortgage market.

The Leamington Spa-based group said first-half sales rose 3.3% to £123.5 million, while pre-tax losses narrowed to £300,000 from £2.4 million in the same period last year. In the UK, which accounts for two-thirds of revenues, sales lifted 9.7%.

It hopes to build on the performance in the second half with a range of new products but said that, on current trading and outlook, sales markets “remain consistent and variable”.

“Uncertainties around mortgage availability and interest rates are a contributing factor. Even so, the willingness of consumers choosing to spend money on kitchen appliances has increased in the UK and North America,” the group said.

It comes as UK borrowers face tighter mortgage affordability checks under new rules introduced earlier this year, and speculation about a forthcoming hike in interest rates.

AGA said its Fired Earth tiles brand had a “strong profitable first half” with a recovery in the market driving a double digit sales increase.

New stores for the brand opened over the last three years in the South East were “performing well in the strengthened housing market”.

The firm also said it hoped to boost sales of its products among those who may “not consider them as relevant to their home and lifestyles”.

It said its new AGA City 60 model, which sells for £4,995 was aimed at widening its customer base and attracting “urban, younger audiences”.

This model has roughly the same dimensions as standard kitchen cabinets and is equipped with wheels to help when moving house.

The group said new designs launched since 2011 had accounted for 60% of AGA orders during the first half.

AGA said after a reorganisation last year its Irish and US businesses were yet to recover profitability and sales fell. It also struggled in France.

But the group planned to begin sales in China in the autumn after spending more than two years gaining the right accreditations.

Operating profits jumped 60% to £2.4 million from a year ago. The pre-tax result was impacted by £2 million pensions charge.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Ipswich Star visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Ipswich Star staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Ipswich Star account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Inspector Julian Ditcham breath tests a motorist

A learner driver has had his provisional licence taken away after being caught drink-driving in a car he was not insurance to drive.

Tess carried a faulty BRCA2 gene, which greatly increases the risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer.

The family of a 24-year-old woman from Ipswich who has died of cancer have paid tribute to her “strength” and “bravery” as she was determined to live life to the full despite the devastating diagnosis.

Crowds at the Ipswich Town FC open day ahead of the 2016/17 season

Ipswich Town fans hoping to go to the club’s open day today will need to plan their parking.

Mia and Toby Hambling with the Great Piggish Bake Off

They are more photographed than Kim Kardashian right now - and it is clear to see why.

Travellers encampment on Bramford Recreation Ground Ipswich.

Ipswich Borough Council today will start to clean up a playing field in Ipswich after a group of travellers left overnight.

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court

A woman used a pair of novelty Christmas slippers to set her ex-boyfriend’s front door alight after he rebuffed her attempt to rekindle their relationship, a court heard.

Visitors to Otley Farm Open Day, July 1973

These days we tend to think of farming as a high-tech industry with the latest agricultural gadgets helping to keep costs down and improve productivity.

Suffolk Dog Day at Helmingham Hall. This extremely popular event draws nearly 8,000 people to Helmingham to enjoy a great day out with their dogs and family and friends.

Dog lovers will not want to miss this year’s Suffolk Dog Day at Helmingham Hall on Sunday (July 31) which celebrates our four-legged friends in all their guises.

Summer Reading Challenge 2016

Looking for things to do with your children or grandchildren this summer? Our free magazine Kids’ Talk can help.

Portman Road

Justice has finally caught up with a fugitive former Ipswich Town bar manager who stole £1,600 from the club during a game.

Most read

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24