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Next upgrades profit guidance

The group also noted that its increase in profit guidance would have been higher, if it had not decided to pay back £29m of its business relief rates, which it accounted for the time its stores traded this year

Next has revealed it is raising its profit guidance for the rest of the year after beating its expectations for full price sales, with a rise of 19% in the last 11 weeks compared with figures posted two years ago.

The fashion retailer said it originally assumed an increase of 3%. However, it will now increase the figure to 6% also increasing its central guidance for full year profit before tax by £30m to £750m. 

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Despite the rise in sales, the group saw its physical store purchases decline by 6% compared with the same period in July 2019. 

However, this was offset by the increase in online sales, which were up 44% over the same two-year period. 

Next, which is headed by Simon Wolfson, credited a “pent-up demand for adult clothing”, and fewer holidays overseas as the reason for the surge in sales. 

The group also noted that its increase in profit guidance would have been higher, if it had not decided to pay back £29m of its business relief rates, which it accounted for the time its stores traded this year. 

Furthermore, Next said it predicted its surplus cash flow to be £240m, which it intends to distribute to shareholders in September.

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