Fashion jobs, Fashion trade news USA, Fashion World business platform for the global apparel industry, FashionUnited New York, Los Angeles, Miami
Fashion and accessories brand Reiss has appointed Christos Angelides as Chief Executive Officer. The company said, Angelides’s appointment is a part of the company's planned succession process. In addition, the company also said that Andy Lawrence has joined the company as Head of International.
"I am delighted that Christos has agreed to lead Reiss going forward and look forward to working closely with him in order to ensure an orderly succession. He brings significant retail experience which will be invaluable as Reiss grows into a truly global fashion brand," said David Reiss, Founder and Chairman of Reiss in a statement.
Christos Angelides takes over as Reiss CEO
Angelides brings over 30 years multi-channel retail experience to Reiss including 28 years at Next where he served for 14 years on the main board as group product director. Most recently he served as president of Abercrombie and Fitch based in the US.
Commenting on his new role at Reiss, Angelides said in the company announcement, "I have long admired the strength of the Reiss brand and its emphasis on timeless luxury at an affordable price. I look forward to building on the strong foundations that David has built and expanding the business further in both the UK and internationally together with the support of Warburg Pincus."
Lawrence joins Reiss from Ralph Lauren where he held a series of senior roles in Asia Pacific including head of Korea and Taiwan and senior director of business development for the region.
The two appointments follow strong trading in the six week period to January 7, 2017. The company founded by David Reiss in 1971, operates from over 189 locations in 17 countries and also has an e-commerce presence. In the year to January 2016, the company generated sales of 146 million pounds (181 million dollars) and EBITDA of 24.4 million pounds (30.4 million dollars).
On a comparable basis including comparable season deliveries, Van de Velde said its consolidated turnover grew slightly from 206.7 million euros (219 million dollars) to 206.8 million euros (219.4 million dollars). The company said turnover on comparable basis grew by 1.2 percent at constant exchange but reported consolidated turnover declined by 1.1 percent from 209 million euros (221 million dollars) to 206.6 million euros (219 million dollars). The company’s reported turnover was stable at constant exchange rates.
Wholesale turnover up 4.4 percent, retail drops 15.6 percent
Van de Velde said that this turnover development on comparable basis consists of growth of wholesale turnover of 4.4 percent, with continued positive performance of both lingerie and swimwear, rise in pre-orders but stagnant back-orders stagnated and 5 percent growth at constant exchange rates due to weakening of the British pound.
The company’s retail turnover declined by 15.6 percent, driven by growth of retail turnover in Europe on a comparable basis at constant exchange rates by 3.7 percent (after closures of loss-making stores: 1.7 percent and after exchange rates: decline of 5.1 percent and the decrease in retail turnover in the US on a comparable basis at constant exchange rates by 20.2 percent (after closures of loss-making stores: dropped 29.9 percent and after exchange rates: down 29.7 percent).
REBITDA increases 2.6 percent, group profit down
On comparable basis (including comparable season deliveries), REBITDA rose by 2.6 percent from 60.4million euros (64 million dollars) to 62 million euros (65 million dollars). Reported consolidated REBITDA was 61.9 million euros (65 million dollars), which was at the same level as the previous year.
The company said, this development (on comparable basis) is primarily due to solid turnover growth of wholesale resulting in a higher gross margin, increases in fixed costs, mainly related to sales-driving costs (such as representatives, customer programs and marketing, expenses made to strengthen ecommerce and ICT as well as in training and development, recruitment and management costs were also higher due to the changes to the management committee and contribution to profit of the retail business at the same level as the previous year, despite lower turnover.
The recurring Group profit declined 18.1 percent, from 41 million euros (43 million dollars) to 33.6 million euros (35 million dollars) and the recurring profit per share decreased from 3.07 euros (3.26 dollars) to 2.52 euros (2.67 dollars).
For the financial year 2016, the board of directors will propose to the General Meeting of Shareholders the same dividend as in the two previous financial years, i.e. a total dividend of 3.5000 euros (3.71 dollars) per share (net dividend of 2.4905 euros. Of this amount, 1.3500 euros (1.43 dollars) was paid out as an interim dividend in November 2016 (net dividend of 0.9855 euros per share). After approval by the General Meeting of Shareholders, the final dividend of 2.1500 euros (2.28 dollars) per share (net dividend of 1.5050 euros per share) will be paid out as from May 4, 2017.
Picture: PrimaDonna Blog
Nordstrom has announced the retirement of Enrique 'Rick' Hernandez, Jr., after he informed the board of directors that he will not be seeking re-election to the board at the end of his current term in May 2017.
"As Rick moves to focus on his other personal and professional pursuits, we want to thank him for his 20 years of service as one of our most valued and longest-term board members," said Blake Nordstrom, Co-President of Nordstrom in a statement, adding, "We are so fortunate to have been the beneficiary of his leadership and guidance that have supported our efforts to provide customers with the best possible shopping experience and helped our company grow from 4.8 billion dollars in sales when he joined us to 14.1 billion dollars through fiscal year 2015."
Hernandez joined the Nordstrom board of directors in 1997 and served the company for almost two decades. He was named lead director in August 2000 and served in that position for more than five years before serving as chairman and presiding director from May 2006 through May 2016.
VF Corporation said, revenue for the fourth quarter and full year was in line with last year. Fourth quarter of 3.3 billion dollars was up 1 percent currency neutral and full year revenue of 12 billion dollars, also up 1 percent currency neutral driven by continued momentum in our international and direct-to-consumer platforms, and Vans business.
“VF’s global business model, diverse brand portfolio and focused operational discipline helped the company deliver solid results in 2016 despite an inconsistent US marketplace,” said Eric Wiseman, Executive Chairman of the Board in a statement, adding, “We’re pleased with the improved quality of our revenue, which reflects continued growth in our international and direct-to-consumer platforms, and our strong gross margin and cash generation performance that enabled us to return a record 1.6 billion dollars to our shareholders.”
Financial highlights of the fourth quarter and FY16
Gross margin improved 90 basis points to a 49.1 percent on a reported basis, as the company said, benefits from pricing, lower product costs and a mix-shift toward higher margin businesses were partially offset by changes in foreign currency and the impact of restructuring charges. On an adjusted basis, gross margin increased 160 basis points to 49.8 percent. Changes in foreign currency negatively affected both reported and adjusted gross margin by 90 basis points during the quarter.
Earnings per share on a reported basis was down 33 percent to 0.63 dollar compared to 0.94 dollar during the same period last year. Adjusted earnings per share increased 3 percent to 0.97 dollar and excluding the impact of changes in foreign currency, adjusted earnings per share was up 8 percent.
Gross margin for the year, improved 20 basis points to 48.4 percent on a reported basis as benefits from pricing, lower product costs, and a mix-shift toward higher margin businesses were partially offset by changes in foreign currency and the impact of restructuring charges. On an adjusted basis, gross margin increased 40 basis points to 48.6 percent. The company said, changes in foreign currency negatively affected both reported and adjusted gross margin by almost 80 basis points in 2016.
Earnings per share on a reported basis was down 9 percent to 2.78 dollars compared to 3.04 dollars in 2015. Adjusted earnings per share for 2016 increased 2 percent to 3.11 dollars and excluding the impact of changes in foreign currency, adjusted 2016 earnings per share was up 7 percent.
Segment-wise financial highlights
Fourth quarter revenue for outdoor & action sports was up 2 percent to 2.1 billion dollars, while the segment’s revenue also increased 2 percent in 2016 to 7.5 billion dollars. Vans brand revenue for the fourth quarter was up 14 percent (up 15 percent currency neutral) driven by a mid-teen increase in the Americas business (up high-teens currency neutral); and in Europe a return to growth with a mid-single-digit rate increase (up low single-digits currency neutral); and more than 20 percent (up more than 25 percent currency neutral) growth in Asia Pacific. Revenue for the Vans brand for the full year was up 6 percent (up 7 percent currency neutral) and reached 2.3 billion dollars.
Fourth quarter revenue for The North Face brand was down 8 percent (down 7 percent currency neutral), which the company said were driven by the strategic decision to reduce sales to the off-price channel and the impact of bankruptcies in North America. Excluding these factors, The North Face brand would have increased at a low single-digit rate. On a regional basis, the Americas declined at a low double-digit rate; Europe increased at a mid-teen rate (up high-teens currency neutral); and, Asia Pacific declined at a low double-digit percentage rate (down mid-single-digit currency neutral). For the full year, revenue for The North Face brand declined 2 percent (down 1 percent currency neutral) to 2.3 billion dollars.
Timberland brand revenue was up 4 percent in the fourth quarter (up 5 percent currency neutral) including a low single-digit rate increase in the Americas region; a high single-digit rate increase in Europe (up low double-digits currency neutral); and, a mid-single-digit rate increase in Asia Pacific. Full year Timberland brand revenue was up 1 percent to 1.8 billion dollars.
Jeanswear fourth quarter revenue declined 5 percent (down 4 percent currency neutral) to 697 million dollars, while full year, global jeanswear revenue was down 2 percent to 2.7 billion dollars (flat currency neutral). Wrangler brand revenue was down 1 percent (up 1 percent currency neutral) in the fourth quarter with revenue in line with last year in the Americas business (up low single-digit currency neutral); a high single-digit rate decrease in Europe (down mid-single digits currency neutral); and, a 20 percent decline in the Asia Pacific region (down high-teens currency neutral). Full year revenue for the Wrangler brand was down 1 percent (up 1 percent currency neutral) to 1.7 billion dollars.
Fourth quarter revenue for the Lee brand was down 13 percent (down 11 percent currency neutral) including a high-teens rate decline in the Americas region; a high single-digit rate increase in Europe (up low double-digits currency neutral); and, a mid-single digit rate decline in the Asia Pacific region (down low single-digit currency neutral). For the full year, revenue for the Lee brand was down 3 percent (down 1 percent currency neutral) to 1 billion dollars.
Imagewear fourth quarter revenue increased 15 percent to 298 million dollars with a more than 20 percent increase in the Licensed Sports Group (LSG) business and a mid-single-digit increase in the workwear business. For the full year, revenue for imagewear was up 2 percent to 1.1 billion dollars.
Sportswear fourth quarter revenue declined 17 percent to 162 million dollars including a 20 percent decrease in Nautica brand revenue and a 2 percent decline in the Kipling brand’s North American business compared to the same period last year. For the full year, Sportswear coalition revenue was down 16 percent to 536 million dollars.
International segment sales up 5 percent in Q4 and 4 percent in FY
International revenue in the fourth quarter was up 5 percent (up 7 percent currency neutral). Revenue was up 6 percent (up 7 percent currency neutral) in Europe and up 6 percent (up 8 percent currency neutral) in the Asia Pacific region, including a 6 percent increase (up 14 percent currency neutral) in China. Revenue in the Americas (non-U.S.) region was down 1 percent (up 6 percent currency neutral). The international business represented 34 percent of total VF fourth quarter sales, compared to 33 percent in last year’s same period.
For the full year, international revenue was up 4 percent (up 6 percent currency neutral). Revenue was up 5 percent (up 4 percent currency neutral) in Europe and up 3 percent (up 6 percent currency neutral) in the Asia Pacific region, including a 4 percent increase (up 10 percent currency neutral) in China. Revenue in the Americas (non-US) region was up 2 percent (up 11 percent currency neutral). The international business represented 38 percent of total VF sales in 2016, compared to 37 percent in 2015.
Direct-to-consumer revenue was up 11 percent (up 12 percent currency neutral) in the fourth quarter driven by a mid-teen increase in the outdoor & action sports business and a mid-teen increase in the international business. The company’s e-commerce business continued its strong momentum with 21 percent revenue growth during the quarter. There were 1,507 VF-owned retail stores at the end of the quarter compared with 1,405 at the end of the fourth quarter of 2015.
For the year, direct-to-consumer revenue was up 8 percent (up 9 percent currency neutral) driven by a low-teen increase in the outdoor & action sports business and a low double-digit (mid-teen currency neutral) increase in the international business. Direct-to-consumer revenue was 28 percent of total VF revenue in 2016 compared to 26 percent in 2015.
Revenues in 2017 expected to rise low-single-digit
For the fiscal year 2017, revenue is expected to increase at a low single-digit percentage rate including about a two percentage point negative impact from changes in foreign currency. By coalition, revenue for outdoor & action sports is expected to increase at a low single-digit percentage rate (up at a mid-single-digit rate currency neutral); revenue for Jeanswear is expected to approximate 2016 levels; imagewear revenue is expected to increase at a low single-digit percentage rate; and sportswear is expected to decline at a high single-digit percentage rate.
International revenue is expected to grow at a low single-digit percentage rate (accelerating to a high single-digit percentage rate on a currency neutral basis). By geographic region, European revenue is expected to increase at a low single-digit percentage rate (up at a high single-digit rate on a currency neutral basis). In the Asia Pacific region, revenue is expected to increase at a mid-single-digit percentage rate (up at a high single-digit rate on a currency neutral basis). And, in the Americas (non-US) region, revenue is expected to increase at a high single-digit percentage rate (up at a low-teen rate currency neutral).
Direct-to-consumer revenue is expected to grow at a high single-digit percentage rate. Direct-to-consumer growth in 2017 includes the addition of about 50 stores and mid-single-digit comparable sales growth, including an expected increase of approximately 25 percent in e-commerce revenue. Earnings per share are expected to be down at a low single-digit percentage rate compared to 2016 adjusted EPS of 3.11 dollars (up at a mid-single-digit percentage rate on a currency neutral basis).
In the first half of 2017, the company expects revenue on a reported basis to decline at a low single-digit percentage rate (about flat on a currency neutral basis). VF expects earnings per share to decline at a mid-single-digit percentage rate on a reported basis (up at a low single-digit rate on a currency neutral basis). Revenue on a reported basis is expected to increase at a low single-digit percentage rate (up at a mid-single-digit rate on a currency neutral basis). Earnings per share are expected to increase at a low single-digit percentage rate on a reported basis (up at a high single-digit rate on a currency neutral basis).
VF’s Board of Directors declared a quarterly dividend of 0.42 dollar per share, payable on March 20, 2017 to shareholders of record on March 10, 2017.
For the period from October 1 to December 31, 2016, Björn Borg Group’s net sales increased by 12.3 percent to 171.4 million Swedish krona (19.3 million dollars). Excluding currency effects, the company said, sales rose by 10.2 percent. For the full year, net sales increased by 10 percent to 631.6 million Swedish krona (71.3 million dollars).
“We finished the year very strongly, and two years and four months after the launch of our business plan, Northern Star, we closed the books on another year in which we improved our key indicators,” said the company’s CEO Henrik Bunge in a media statement.
Björn Borg also posts rise in Q4 and FY earnings
The company said, gross profit margin for the quarter was 48 percent and excluding currency effects, the margin was 49.9 percent. Operating profit amounted to 21.4 million Swedish krona (2.4 million dollars) compared to 14.6 million (1.6 million dollars) in the same quarter last year and profit after tax was 17.9 million Swedish krona (2.02 million dollars) against 7.3 million (0.8 million dollars). Earnings per share before and after dilution amounted to 0.74 Swedish krona (0.08 dollar) compared to 0.34 (0.04 dollar) last year’s quarter.
The gross profit margin for the full year was 50.3 percent and excluding currency effects, the margin was 50.7 percent. Operating profit amounted to 64.2 million Swedish krona (7.25 million dollars) against 58.6 million (6.6 million dollars) in 2015. Profit after tax amounted to 46.9 million Swedish krona (5.3 million dollars) compared to 41.6 million (4.7 million dollars) last year and earnings per share before and after dilution amounted to 1.88 Swedish krona (0.2 dollar) against 1.79 (0.20 dollar) last year.
The company also said that the Board of Directors has decided to propose to the Annual General Meeting a dividend distribution of 2 Swedish krona (0.23 dollar) per share, totaling 50.3 million Swedish krona (5.6 million dollars).
Ralph Lauren Corporation has announced two senior executive appointments, which the company said would further solidify its leadership team in support of its Way Forward Plan. While Jonathan Bottomley has been named Chief Marketing Officer, a newly created role for the company, Tom Mendenhall has been named Brand President, Men’s Polo, Purple Label and Double RL.
Commenting on the new additions to the leadership team, Ralph Lauren said in a statement, “As we write our next chapter, we continue to add exceptionally strong leaders with the passion, energy, and talent to lead our Company into the future. Both Jonathan and Tom bring a fresh perspective and incredible depth of brand experience to Ralph Lauren.”
Jonathan Bottomley and Tom Mendenhall join Ralph Lauren
The company said, Bottomley will be responsible for evolving Ralph Lauren’s brand voice, leading the global marketing team and building cut-through marketing strategies across the company’s brands and in this newly created role, all men’s brand functions will report into Mendenhall, including design and merchandising, and he will be charged with maximizing brand strength to improve sales growth.
Bottomley joins Ralph Lauren in April from Vice Media, where he served as Chief Strategy Officer of Virtue. Prior to that, he was chief strategy officer and managing partner in the London headquarters of Bartle Bogle Hegarty where he led strategic brand-building efforts for clients across the luxury and consumer lifestyle sectors. He will be a part of the company’s Executive Team and dual report to Valerie Hermann, President of Global Brands and Ralph Lauren, Executive Chairman and Chief Creative Officer, on an interim basis.
Mendenhall joins Ralph Lauren from Tom Ford International, where he served as chief operating officer for more than a decade, working alongside Tom Ford to build the brand from its inception. Prior to that, he was a senior vice president at Abercrombie & Fitch. He also spent eight years as worldwide director of merchandising at Gucci. He will also report to Hermann, and will begin with the company on March 29, 2017.
The British high-end lingerie firm Agent Provocateur is said to be bordering administration. Mounting debt and shrinking sales might be the touch of grace for the sassy lingerie brand.
The intimate fashion label, founded by Vivienne Westwood’s son and is popular with celebrities from all over the world, has suffered weak sales in recent years, hit by a slow-down in luxury high street spending.
Private equity firm 3i owns a majority stake in Agent Provocateur and would be reportedly trying to sell the company. In this regard, ‘The Guardian’ informed on Thursday that restructuring firm AlixPartners has now been appointed to lead a sale process.
The UK paper reported that bids for the company were tabled late last week. Among the five or so bidders is thought to be Lion Capital, the former private equity owner of La Senza and American Apparel, and Alteri. Other bidders thought to have made it to the advisers’ shortlist are the specialist turnaround group Endless and French women's fashion brand Etam.
3i looking to get at least 30 million pounds for Agent Provocateur
According to sources close to the matter quoted by ‘The Guardian’, the financial advisers are looking to sell the brand for at least 30 million pounds.
It’s worth highlighting that this is roughly the sum that Agent Provocateur owes to its lenders. Meanwhile, 3i is looking to finalise a deal ahead of a deadline for rent and rate payments which falls around late February or early March.
The company says manufacturing in Britain and Europe has declined over the last decade but it continues to use European laces, fabrics and trims where possible, Reuters reports.
Image:Agent Provocateur S/S17 Collection
Kate Spade & Company’s net sales for the full year were 1.381 billion dollars, an increase of 139 million dollars or 11.2 percent, compared to the full year 2015. Net sales increased 166 million dollars or 13.7 percent, excluding sales for wind-down operations for the full year 2015. Adjusted EBITDA was 261 million dollars compared to adjusted EBITDA, excluding wind-down operations of 203 million dollars for the full year 2015. The company also said that it is in the process of reviewing strategic alternatives to enhance shareholder value.
"Our solid fourth quarter and fiscal year performance demonstrate the strength of our differentiated business model, as we continued to gain market share and deliver strong growth despite a challenging retail environment. In 2016, we thoughtfully expanded our global store base, opening 52 net new owned and partner-operated stores," said Craig A. Leavitt, Chief Executive Officer of Kate Spade & Company in a press release.
Full year earnings rise to 1.17 dollars
For the full year 2016 on a GAAP basis, the company recorded income from continuing operations of 152 million dollars or 1.17 dollars per diluted share, compared to income from continuing operations for 2015 of 22 million dollars or 0.17 dollar per diluted share. Diluted earnings per share were 0.70 dollar compared to adjusted diluted earnings of 0.48 dollar for the full year 2015.
"We are pleased to report top-line growth of 14 percent for the full-year. In 2016, we delivered Adjusted EBITDA margin expansion of 220 basis points compared to the prior year, reflecting our ongoing focus on expense management, as well as the benefit of lower annual incentive compensation year-over-year,” added George Carrara, President and Chief Operating Officer of Kate Spade & Company.
Fourth quarter net sale up 9.8 percent
Net sales for the fourth quarter of 2016 were 471 million dollars an increase of 42 million dollars or 9.8 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2015. Net sales for the quarter increased 43 million dollars or 10.1 percent, excluding sales for wind-down operations for the fourth quarter of 2015.
Direct-to-consumer comparable sales growth was 9.3 percent or down 1.5 percent excluding ecommerce. Comparable sales per square foot for kate spade new york stores were 1,557 dollars for the latest twelve months, compared to 1,615 dollars for the twelve month period ended October 1, 2016, partially impacted by foreign exchange rates.
Income from continuing operations was 87 million dollars or 0.67 dollar per diluted share compared to 62 million dollars or 0.48 dollar per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2015. Diluted earnings per share from continuing operations using a normalized tax rate were 0.41 dollar, compared to adjusted diluted earnings per share of 0.32 dollar in the fourth quarter of 2015.
North America segment net sales rise 9.5 percent
Kate Spade North America net sales for the fourth quarter were 407 million dollars, an increase of 35 million dollars or 9.5 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2015. Kate Spade North America segment adjusted EBITDA was 107 million dollars (26.4 percent of net sales) for the quarter compared to 91 million dollars (24.5 percent of net sales) for the fourth quarter of 2015.
Kate Spade International net sales were 59 million dollars, an increase of 6 million dollars or 12.4 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2015. Net sales increased 8 million dollars or 15.2 percent, excluding sales for wind-down operations for the fourth quarter of 2015. Kate Spade International Segment adjusted EBITDA was 10 million dollars (17.1 percent of net sales) and 4 million dollars (8.6 percent of net sales) in 2015. Segment adjusted EBITDA excluding wind-down operations was 5 million dollars (9.1 percent of adjusted net sales) for the fourth quarter of 2015.
Adelington Design Group net sales were 6 million dollars, an increase of 2.3 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2015. Segment’s adjusted EBITDA was 1 million dollars (14.4 percent of net sales) compared to 2 million dollars (32.3 percent of net sales) for the fourth quarter of 2015. Segment adjusted EBITDA excluding wind-down operations was 1 million dollars (26.6 percent of net sales) for the fourth quarter of 2015.
Kinnevik’s Nomination Committee has proposed to elect Henrik Poulsen as new Director of the board at the Annual General Meeting in May 2017. Poulsen is the Chief Executive Officer of Dong Energy, the global leader in offshore wind power.
Commenting on the proposed appointment, Cristina Stenbeck, Chairman of the Nomination Committee, said in a statement, “Henrik has an exceptional background in Nordic telecoms, private equity investing, and the management of a long-term global entrepreneurial family business, all of which fit Kinnevik's own operating model. His current experience as a CEO of a public company will help guide our investee companies.”
Prior to joining Dong Energy in 2012, Poulsen was the chief executive officer of Danish telecommunications company TDC between 2008 and 2012, after seven successful years working in a variety of leadership positions including EVP at Lego.
The Nomination Committee is comprised of Cristina Stenbeck appointed by Verdere, Wilhelm Klingspor appointed by the Klingspor family, Edvard von Horn appointed by the von Horn family, James Anderson appointed by Baillie Gifford, and Ramsay Brufer appointed by Alecta.
Laura Ashley Group said that the 26 weeks period to December 31, 2016, total group sales were 146 million pounds (182 million dollars) compared to 149.8 million pounds in the period ending January 30, 2016, representing a fall of 2.5 percent. The company's board feels that due to continued market challenges, net pre-tax profit for the year will fall below market expectations.
Commenting on the results, Tan Sri Dr Khoo Kay Peng, Chairman, said in a media release, “Trading conditions have been demanding during the first six months of the year ending 30 June 2017. The board has reviewed the first half results and forecasts for the remainder of the year to 30th June 2017 and, given the continued market challenges, feels that net pre-tax profit for the year will fall below market expectations.”
Retail like-for-like sales in UK decline
Like-for-like retail sales fell by 3.5 percent, while ecommerce sales grew to 25.6 million pounds (31 million dollars). Like-for-like ecommerce sales grew by 2.1 percent.
As at December 31, 2016, the property portfolio in the UK comprised of 190 stores including 115 mixed product stores, 48 home stores, 25 concession stores, one gifts & accessories store and one clearance outlet. During the reporting period, two stores were closed and none were opened. The company said, 22 concession stores in Homebase will be closed by June 2017 following the acquisition of Homebase by Bunnings.
Total UK retail sales of 133.4 million pounds (166 million dollars) were recorded during the period against 136.7 million pounds (170 million dollars) for 26 weeks to January 30, 2016. On a like-for-like basis, UK retail sales fell by 3.5 percent. Total ecommerce sales rose to 25.6 million pounds (31 million dollars) during the period. Already delivering to eight European countries, the company recently added delivery to the Czech Republic and Hungary. The company also launched its digital platform in China in November 2016.
Laura Ashley fashion sales decline 5 percent
The UK business is split into four main categories. For the 26 weeks ended December 31, 2016, the company said, relative split of UK sales was as follows: home accessories 34 percent, furniture 30 percent, decorating 20 percent and fashion 16 percent. For the period, the company fashion category that includes adult fashion, fashion accessories and perfumery reported sales decrease of 5 percent over the same period last year with like-for-like sales down 3.2 percent.International Operations
Among other categories, furniture segment sales decreased by 9.3 percent with like-for-like sales down 8 percent, home accessories sales, however increased by 0.3 percent with like-for-like performance up by 2.5 percent. Decorating sales for the period fell by 7.7 percent with like-for-like sales down by 6.4 percent.
Annual pre-tax profit expected to fall below expectations
The company said, since trading conditions have been demanding during the first six months of the year ending 30 June 2017, the board feels that net pre-tax profit for the year will fall below market expectations. Like-for-like sales for the six weeks to February 11, 2017 were 0.6 percent down on last year.
The board recommended the payment of an interim dividend of 0.5 pence per share.