April 12, 2018 / 6:47 AM / 2 years ago

WH Smith's interim profit dips as high street business sags

FILE PHOTO - A company logo is pictured outside a branch of WH Smith in Manchester northern England, March 17, 2016. REUTERS/Phil Noble/File Photo

(Reuters) - British books, newspaper and stationery retailer WH Smith Plc (SMWH.L) reported a 1 percent drop in interim pretax profit as its high street business continues to sag under pressure from broader softness in the UK retail market.

WH Smith, which has over 1,300 stores, primarily in the UK, said group pretax profit for the six months to Feb. 28 fell 1 percent to 82 million pounds.

Total revenue from its high street business was down 5 percent with comparable sales falling 4 percent.

However, total sales at its travel arm, made up of outlets at airports, railways stations, motorway services, hospitals and workplaces, rose 7 percent for the interim period.

Reporting by Rahul B in Bengaluru; Editing by Sunil Nair

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