Dixons bucks the trend with some good news from Greece

As the world continued to watch as Europe inched towards a solution of the Greek crisis, a small piece of good – and, perhaps, surprising – news emerged from the benighted nation.

Using tablet device in Greece
Electricals and mobile phones giant Dixons Carphone has reported that its Greek arm Kotsovolos had returned to profit over the past year, with strong sales of large screen TVs helping to boost like-for-like sales.Dixons revealed last week that Greek shoppers had been panic buying electrical and white goods in the wake of the 'non' referendum, though the company said the buying spree had now tapered off.While hopes are high that a new bailout can be organised following the Greek parliament's approval of new austerity measures, Dixons said it remained "very mindful of the uncertain economic and political situation in the country and the effect this may have on our business". It added that it had drawn up plans "for every contingency".Other company divisions in southern Europe did not fare so well with Spain seeing particularly difficult trading conditions and dragging comparable store sales down by five per cent.Overall, however, the UK-based firm, which trades under the Carphone Warehouse and Currys PC World logos in Britain, reported a "terrific year" with profits up 21 per cent.Underlying pre-tax profits leapt to £381 million in the 13 months to the beginning of May 2 with like-for-like sales in the UK and Ireland increasing by eight per cent.Sebastian James, group chief executive, said, "This has been a terrific first year for Dixons Carphone."We have seen excellent increases in both sales and profitability and we have made very encouraging progress with the tricky job of integrating these two great companies."I am acutely aware that there is no room for complacency in a sector which has seen unprecedented change, bringing both opportunities and challenges."The company also welcome the UK government's plan to introduce a national 'living wage' and said it was already preparing for higher minimum wages for staff ahead of the announcement in last week's Budget.Humphrey Singer, the finance director, said, "It's the right thing to do to offer a good wage for our employees."For more Re:locate news and features about business and enterprise, click here and for more about Europe, click here