Third-quarter group sales of Kingfisher PLC rose but retail profit slipped.
Sales for the 13 weeks through Nov. 3 rose 6.4 percent to 2.41 billion pounds (US$4.96 billion; 3.35 billion EUR), while retail profit slipped 1.9 percent 171.7 million pounds (US$354.9 million; 240 million EUR), the company said in a trading statement.
Retail profit - which excludes some costs, exceptional items, amortization and shares of joint venture, among other items - was cut by the cost of improvements made to existing stores.
Kingfisher spent 14 million pounds (US$28.9 million; 19.6 million EUR) on refurbishments during the period.
"Our international businesses, which account for more than half of Kingfisher's sales, again delivered positive sales and profit growth driven by particularly good performances in France and Poland," Chairman Peter Jackson said.
Kingfisher, the owner of the B&Q chain, has 760 stores in 10 countries including the U.K., France, Poland and China. Its shares dipped 1.4 percent to 157.7 pence (US$3.25; 2.20 EUR) on the London Stock Exchange.
The choice of the city of Helsinki is not incidental as the capital of Finland had hosted US-Soviet negotiations on the limitation of nuclear stockpiles in 1969