Pets at Home chain plans to open 40 new stores

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A puppyImage source, Getty Images

By Annie Green

BBC Business reporter

Pets astatine Home says it is readying to unfastened astatine slightest 40 caller stores crossed the UK arsenic location moving inspires much radical to bargain pets.

The retailer, which has astir 460 shops currently, unveiled the plans arsenic it reported grounds yearly profits.

It said it was peculiarly funny successful opening successful municipality areas similar London.

Pets astatine Home, which enactment up its prices this year, said the emergence successful location moving meant much radical were buying pets astatine a younger age.

Lyssa McGowan, who took implicit arsenic main enforcement past June, said the accidental offered by "Generation Z" was determination for the taking.

Total gross astatine the concern was up 6.6% to £1.4bn successful the twelvemonth to the extremity of March.

Underlying pre-tax profits came successful astatine £136.4m - up 4.8%.

The grounds show came contempt the concern facing soaring vigor costs and having to wage higher wages.

While the radical has enactment up prices, it said it had held backmost from passing connected each the outgo pressures it has been facing.

Ms McGowan added that it was hard to foretell prices implicit the twelvemonth ahead, but pledged to walk connected immoderate cuts if its ain wholesale costs fell.

The chain, which besides offers grooming and veterinary services, said the roar successful favored ownership seen during the pandemic had showed small motion of easing, contempt the cost-of-living crisis.

Membership of its VIP loyalty nine scheme, which offers discounts and tips, has grown to 7.7 million.

The steadfast said the strategy was inactive attracting ample numbers of caller consumers, with astir 24,000 puppy and kitten owners signing up each week.

This is down somewhat from the 29,000 seen during the pandemic, but inactive "significantly" higher than pre-Covid, it said.

The company's £400m maturation strategy besides includes gathering a caller app which volition let customers to publication veterinary appointments and negociate subscriptions.

However, the firm's plans for concern are expected to clasp backmost nett maturation successful the twelvemonth up arsenic the steadfast reinvests.

It said it expected underlying pre-tax profits to beryllium level successful 2023-24 astatine astir £136m.

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