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Coronavirus hits sales at Superdry

Superdry revenue dipped 19.1% to £705m for the full year to 25 April, with fourth quarter performance impacted by the ongoing coronavirus crisis. 

Store sales dipped 57% during the fourth quarter, with the retailer’s store estate closed since late March. Retail sales dropped 22.9% for the full year to £288.3m.

Weekly ecommerce sales have doubled year on year over the last four weeks, and womenswear ranges currently account for around half of sales for the first time. 

Ecommerce sales were up 6.8% in the fourth quarter but declined 8.2% in the 2020 financial year. 

The retailer said its performance in the six weeks to 7 March materially improved and online sales grew 18.8% year on year until the outbreak of Covid-19. 

Wholesale revenues were down 20.1% for the year, and 35.8% in the fourth quarter. The retailer said shipments are now resuming as lockdown measures ease and its franchise stores begin reopening. 

The retailer said it has been “working collaboratively” with its supply base: extending payment terms, increasing discounts and rebalancing its stock intake. It has reduced the number of units of future buys by 20%.

Chief executive Julian Dunkerton said the retailer ”continue[s] to work hard so that the business can emerge stronger from this extraordinary period.”

The company had £39.8m of net cash as of 5 May and is in “constructive discussions” with its existing lenders (HSBC and BNPP) and potential new finance providers to explore the need for additional liquidity going forward. 

The majority of its requests for three-month rent deferrals, worth more than £20m, have been granted by landlords. As of 6 May, the retailer had re-opened 48 stores across Europe in accordance to government guidelines, with 130 expected to be trading by the end of May.

Superdry furloughed 88% of its staff upon closure of its store estate and corporate sites.

A pay reduction of 25% has been taken by executive directors and board members for a minimum three month period from 1 April. Executive directors will not receive a bonus for 2020 or 2021. 

Julian Dunkerton, chief executive, said: ”Our first priority through the pandemic has been supporting our colleagues and communities through what is a very uncertain time. We are proud to have supported the NHS and other key workers close to our Gloucestershire headquarters, for instance through donating 300,000 items of vital PPE to local care homes.

“As with all retailers, the Covid-19 pandemic has caused major disruption to our business operations and supply chain. I am pleased with the accelerating shift in sales to online, and we’ve seen a particularly good performance from our women’s ranges which, for the first time ever, are accounting for around half our sales. Clearly however, the closure of all our stores has had a major impact. We are taking all practical steps to preserve cash, looking carefully at all areas of the business and working to secure additional liquidity and financial flexibility.

”We continue to work hard so that the business can emerge stronger from this extraordinary period. It will take time to return to normality, for now we remain open for business online through, our stores in Europe have begun to reopen and I am excited by our new ranges for the autumn/winter season.”


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