During its spring presentations, Toymaster told its members and suppliers that it was expecting purchases to slip by five per cent in 2011. To the end of August, however, the group has experienced a rise of 1.5 per cent.
44.8 per cent of members have experienced improved sales Y.T.D. to the end of August, while 31.9 per cent have seen sales remain flat and only 23.3 per cent have reported worsening sales.
The August figures show an improvement month-on-month. YTD sales to the end of July improved for 35.8 per cent of members. 24.8 per cent saw flat sales and 39.4 per cent experienced worsening results YTD.
And to the end of June, 40.3 per cent were improving, 12.6 per cent were level and the majority - 47.1 per cent were worsening.
A Toymaster statement commented: "Perhaps the sceptics who regularly predict the death of the independent are looking in the wrong direction?
"Who knows, if the snow falls of last November and December aren’t repeated we might even have another year of growth…"