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Debenhams profits fall

Debenhams saw pre-tax profits fall 16.9% to £105.9 million for the year ended August 30.

Debenhams saw like-for-like sales fall 0.9% for the year ended August 30, but the department store gained 0.3% in clothing market share.

Debenhams recorded total sales up 1.3% to £2.3 billion over the period.

Debenhams chief executive Rob Templeman said: “In what has been a difficult trading environment, we were pleased to have been able to deliver gross transaction value growth of 1.3%. The market share gains, alongside our strategic objectives of focusing on product design, quality and value, demonstrate that our products are finding favour with customers. In 2009 we will drive the business forward by continuing to focus on product design, quality and value and on the important differentiation provided by our exclusive Designers at Debenhams ranges. At the same time we will invest prudently in higher returning projects such as new stores.”

Templeman added: “We will remain focused on managing the business tightly in light of difficult and uncertain market conditions through the pro-active, close management of costs, stocks and capital to ensure we emerge from this downturn in the strongest possible position.”

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