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Why Halfords Group plc Shares Revved Up

Although we don’t believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes — just in case they’re material to our investing thesis.

What: The share price of Halfords (LSE: HFD)  has jumped 10% this morning, following the release its half-yearly report to 27 September 2013.

So what: Halfords has had a tough 2013, seeing its share price plummet 16% back in May, when the company announced that it was slashing its dividend by 35%. But since then, its “Getting into Gear 2016″ initiative — which is focusing on delivering a much-improved customer experience — seems to be having an effect, and group revenue has grown 6.2% on a like-for-like basis, compared with the same period last year.

Most progress was seen in the company’s retail operation, where good summer weather and a second successive British victory in the Tour de France boosted sales of cycles. In contrast, its autocentres business was affected by both operational and market challenges, but the company says it has “a clear investment plan in place to grow the business over the medium term.”

Now what: As Halford’s chief executive Matt Davies commented in the report, these are still “early days” in the company’s three-year “Getting into Gear 2016″ transformation plan. But things do seem to be moving in the right direction, and the imminent appointment of a new CEO for its autocentres business should help matters further.

Currently at 462p, Halford’s share price is up now 38% so far in 2013, having more than recovered from the 16% fall back  in May.

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> Jon doesn't own shares in Halfords.