Arnotts returns a modest profit - citing strong sales of shoes and jewelry

Improved consumer confidence has helped the iconic Dublin store

Arnotts Department Store, which was acquired by Galen Weston’s Selfrdidges Group last month, returned a modest profit in 2014.

The group made an operating profit of €159,000 in the year to the end of January, that is up from operating losses of €1.1m the previous year.

The 2013 accounts had been flattered by a once-off €8.8m exceptional gain on its pension scheme.

Turnover at Arnotts rose by just under 3% during 2014 to €114m. The accounts exclude the Boyers Business, which was subsequently acquired by Noel Smyth’s Fitzwilliam Group and which is set to close early in 2016.

The Westons also own Brown Thomas, and the family has an interest in Associated British Foods who own Primark.

"The acquisition of the Arnotts business by the Selfridges group has been very well received by customers, employees and suppliers. We are pleased with the performance of the business since the acquisition and sales are well ahead of last year," said managing director Donald McDonald.

The store adds that jewellery and shoe sales have boosted the store's performance.

“Consumer confidence continues to be positive in 2015 as spending levels continue to improve,” according to the directors report.