harry-corry-co-fasciaStronger gross margin and higher sales helped 48-store furniture and furnishings chain Harry Corry return to profit at EBITDA level in 2013–14.

Year to end February sales climbed 3.6 per cent to £38.5m — a four year high — for the retailer, whose stores are located across Northern Ireland (14), Republic of Ireland (22) and Scotland (12).

Gross margin lifted 250 basis points to 59.6 per cent, which the privately owned chain put down to changes in the product mix and higher sales.

It also said it had cut costs which, combined with improvement elsewhere, helped it return positive EBITDA of £1.4m, a turnaround on the £120k deficit of 2012–13.

Non-cash depreciation charges and interest meant it remained loss-making at the pre-tax line, though its deficit reduced from £2.5m to £364k year-on-year.

Year-end cash declined to £1.7m (2013: £2.2m) with net debt cut to £1.5m (2013: £3.3m).

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