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Topps Tiles updates on strategic focus on multichannel convenience and inspiration

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Topps Tiles today reported a 4.4% first-quarter sales rise as it said it was making good progress with a strategy that includes inspiring customers and offering them convenient ways to buy across sales channels.

The tiles and flooring specialist, a Top100 retailer which is ranked Elite for its merchandising in the IRUK Top500 research, said that during the first 13 weeks of its current financial year it had opened its second lab store, this one in Shoreditch, where it tests new approaches to display and to merchandising. It also improved its online visualiser (pictured) by adding new rooms and functionality. Sales during that period rose by 4.4%, or 5.2% on a like-for-like basis, which strips out the effect of new store openings and closures.

Matthew Williams, chief executive, said Topps' overarching strategy continued to be to do better than specialist stores. "Our strategy of out-specialising the specialists continues to be very effective," he said, "and we are confident that our plan for 2016 will see us deliver additional profitable sales growth as we further extend the appeal of the Topps brand."

The quarter was also notable for progress towards Topps' aim of streamlining its business in the light of multichannel approaches to trading, closing clearance stores in favour of an online shop.

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