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Arcadia's full-year profits dip 3.4%

Arcadia Group has reported a 3.4% fall in pre-tax profits for the year to August 30, as sales rose 0.9% to £2.7bn.

The group, which owns Topshop, Topman, Miss Selfridge, Dorothy Perkins, Burton, Wallis and BHS, saw pre-tax profits before exceptional items fall 3.4% to £143.1m, down from last year’s £148.1m.

Total sales grew 0.9% from £2.68bn to £2.7bn, while like for likes across the group were up 1.6% (Arcadia up 0.7% and BHS up 3.6%).

Underlying UK retail like-for-like sales were up 0.1% on last year, while retail margin was down 0.6 percentage points.

Arcadia Group founder and chief executive Sir Philip Green said: “The retail industry continues to be fast changing, as the number of channels through which customers choose to purchase and engage with us continually evolves, thus increasing the complexity of our operations, and our need for efficiency and speed to market.

“Over the past year, we have continued to trade successfully in the UK, with strong performances in particular from Dorothy Perkins and Wallis.”

Arcadia said it “continues to review our property portfolio in the UK, given the number of leases due to expire”. Over the last year it has closed a net 64 stores and 213,000 sq ft of space. Its current UK store portfolio stands at 2,311.

In the US, the group opened three new wholly-owned Topshop and Topman stores, bringing the total to seven. This included the recently opened 40,000 sq ft flagship in New York.

It also further developed its partnership with Nordstrom, and is now trading from 52 Topshop concessions and 55 Topman concessions, in addition to Nordstrom.com. A further net 55 Topshop/Topman international franchise outlets were opened during the year.

Green said: “Looking ahead for Topshop/Topman, we have exciting new openings in Houston and Atlanta for spring 2015, and our first wholly-owned store in Europe opens in Amsterdam on February 26, building upon our existing presence in six European department stores.

“Additionally, we are developing our trading relationship with Lane Crawford in Hong Kong, having opened a further two stores in the summer.”

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