Figures released today show that the retailer notched up a 12.5 per cent surge in bike sales in the seven weeks to 19 August as Olympians Sir Bradley Wiggins, Laura Trott and Jason Kenny brought home a clutch of medals.
The group said sales were also boosted by good weather, a promotional push and a “stellar” line-up of ranges launched by past and present Olympians Trott, Wiggins, Chris Boardman and Victoria Pendleton.
The bounceback left overall like-for-like bike sales 1.9 per cent higher in the first 20 weeks of the firm’s financial year and marked a reversal of the 4 per cent slide seen in the 13 weeks to 1 July when it was hit by wet weather and the timing of Easter.
The resurgent performance also follows a dismal summer last year for Halfords, when bike sales tumbled in the peak selling season.
Chief executive Jill McDonald hailed a “fantastic” Olympics for Britain’s cycling team.
She said: “Motoring sales were robust, driven by car and motorcycle parts, roof boxes and child seats. Good growth in cycling sales during the peak summer period was supported by new ranges, strong promotional activity, good weather and the success of Halfords’ Olympic cycling heroes.
“We continue to make good progress on our strategic initiatives; we can now match 25 per cent of our retail sales to specific customers compared to only 3 per cent last year and in recent weeks we have successfully piloted contactless payments and also launched the new Cycle Republic website.”
Independent retail analyst Nick Bubb said: “Today’s quarterly update from Halfords only covers the last seven weeks trading, in effect, but the period appears to have gone well.”