THE Hampshire-based DIY giant B&Q has seen another slide in sales.

Parent company Kingfisher PLC is in the middle of an overhaul which has seen it shut 65 branches of the home improvement store and cut around 3,000 jobs.

Kingfisher revealed “disappointing” recent trading and new chief executive Thierry Garnier admitted there was “much to do” to turn around its fortunes.

The group revealed that Chandlers Ford-based B&Q had seen its decline in like-for-like sales accelerate to 3.4 per cent in the quarter to October 31.

This was offset by growth of 3.7 per cent in Kingfisher’s Screwfix arm, although that figure was a slowdown on the performance in the first half of the year.

Sales in France remained under pressure, falling 6.1 per cent, with a 5.2 per cent drop for its other international operations.

Mr Garnier, who took over eight weeks ago from former chief executive Veronique Laury, said Kingfisher continues to suffer from a lengthy overhaul programme and tough market conditions.

The group also warned trading would remain tough for the final quarter across all its operations, with the UK continuing to be affected by disruption to sales from range changes as well as a tough market.

Mr Garnier said: “It is clear that there is much to do to improve our performance.

“Kingfisher’s trading during the third quarter was disappointing.”

He added: “We are suffering from organisational complexity, and we are trying to do too much at once with multiple large-scale initiatives running in parallel.

“Altogether, this has brought disruption to sales and has distracted the business from focusing on customers.”

Kingfisher’s current overhaul, introduced by Ms Laury, has involved shaking up ranges and improving the online offering, as well as store closures.

But the group has admitted this had taken its toll on performance, with recent half-year results showing profits dropped 12.5 per cent to £245million.

Shares in Kingfisher fell by up to nine per cent at one point yesterday. Richard Hunter, head of markets at Interactive Investor, said Kingfisher’s latest share price drop could threaten the firm’s position as a blue chip stock.

He said: “This further decline brings Kingfisher’s status as a FTSE 100 constituent into question and without some improvement in the lead-up to the December reshuffle, the company is a strong contender for relegation.”

B&Q was founded in 1969, when Richard Block and David Quayle opened a store in Southampton. It was bought by Pater Noster, later renamed Kingfisher, in the 1980s.