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Dixons Carphone looking to increase services offering

Dixons Carphone is looking to increase the support it can offer consumers as it plans to extend its services reach

Dixons Carphone is looking to increase the services it can offer home customers next year in a bid to increase its revenues and get more of a footprint in homes.

The tech retailer has always sold warranties and some service cover for specific devices but is planning to provide a more comprehensive offering to ensure users can remain connected at home.

Speaking on the BBC radio this morning the group chief executive of Dixons Carphone Sebastian James said that it was starting to trial some services and would be more active on that front next year.

He said that it was starting to monitor what customers were doing with technology and it wouldf make sure that whatever was in the home it would make sure it would keep working and it had not finalised quite how that services offering would look but it was going to be doing more work on that front.

James was discussing the strategy as the firm delivered its latest set of numbers for the first half of the year revealing that business in the UK and Ireland had enjoyed a strong start to the year.

Revenues for the first half for the Group were up by 5% with the UK slightly ahead of that overall performance with a 7% like-for-like improvement.

Pre-tax profits were slightly up at £78m, compared to £71m last year, and the only fly in the ointment continues to be the impact of currency rates, which have plagued the IT industry this year.

The other ongoing issue is the decline in demand for PCs and tablets with consumers more keen to spend their money on white goods and TVs.

For most of the H1 period the focus was on continuing to bring the Dixons and Carphone businesses together and the firm able to make some cost and synergy savings. Since the merger of the two retailers was announced last May there has been quite a lot of work done to bring the back office and store operations under a single ownership model.

"Our integration continues to go well and it gives me real pleasure to see the business looking and feeling like a single unit. The vast majority of the difficult decisions have been made and implemented and we will complete this with the move of the Carphone Warehouse depot to Newark in the new year. I think that, with nearly all the bigger changes done, we are now ready to settle into a more normal married life and to think about our business as a single Dixons Carphone entity," said James.

At the end of October the stores-within-a-store strategy had seen 261 Carphone Warehouse operations opening in Currys and PC World stores and plans to consolidate space with a 3-in-1 format will continue into the second half.

James was optimistic that the Christmas trading period is going to be a positive one and it will exit the calendar year is going to finish off on a high.

"A strong Black Friday was a great start to Christmas and I will look forward to communicating again in January with a more complete view of the season and plans for the year ahead," said James.

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