UK: French Connection expects FY loss after sales dip
Shares in clothing retailer French Connection dipped by nearly 10% this morning (16 January) after the company revealed disappointing Christmas sales figures.
UK/Europe like-for-like retail sales were down 2.9% in the 24 weeks to 12 January, with the company blaming 1.9% of the decline on its decision to delay its January sale period by a week.
This was done, it said, “to build brand equity”, and French Connection said trading in North America was “broadly in line with expectations” following a similar delay to its sale period there, and in spite of disruption from extreme weather.
The company added that its autumn/winter season in the UK and Europe had started well, but softened in the run-up to Christmas.
French Connection said it expected to report a loss before tax and exceptional items of GBP7.5-8m (US$12-12.8m) in the full year ending 31 January, but added that January was an “important” shipping period for its wholesale business.
The company will report its full-year results on 13 March.
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