JOHANNESBURG – South African furniture brand Lewis Group said on Wednesday it benefitted from its diversification strategy and delivered a strong sales performance in the third quarter ended December 31, despite the continued challenging trading and economic conditions.

Merchandise sales were enhanced by the acquisition of United Furniture Outlets and increased by 22.8 percent for the quarter, resulting in a 24.6 percent growth for the nine months ended December.

Comparable stores grew sales by six percent for the quarter and 7.1 percent for the nine months.

Other revenue, consisting of finance charges and initiation fees, insurance premiums and services rendered, increased by 0.8 percent for the quarter, reflecting a 3.4 percent decline after adjustment for credit impaired accounts.

This reflected an improving performance on the 2.8 percent decline in other revenue reported for the six months ended September.

Lewis's total group revenue, comprising merchandise sales and other revenue, increased by 13.2 percent for the quarter and 12 percent for the nine months, or 11.4 percent and 10.1 percent respectively after adjustment for credit impaired accounts.

African News Agency (ANA)