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Jacques Vert Group launches new brand as like-for-likes fall

Womenswear business Jacques Vert Group has launched a plus-size brand and designer collaboration, as it reports like-for-like sales fell 19.6% in the year to January 25, 2014.

JVG has collaborated with Dame Zandra Rhodes on a range of kaftans, which will form part of new plus-size brand Colebrooke by Windsmoor’s first collection for spring 15.

The seven kaftans each have matching scarves, which can be worn around the neck or as turbans and are available in sizes small to extra large, priced at between £89 and £199.

Named after the street in London at which JVG’s headquarters is located, the main Colebrooke collection also includes reversible kaftans, as well as separates and matching sets – all in sizes 12 to 24.

Colebrooke will be available through Windsmoor.co.uk, House of Fraser, John Lewis, Debenhams and independent retailers. Rhodes’ kaftans will only be available through Windsmoor.co.uk, House of Fraser and John Lewis.

The announcement comes as JVG posted its results for the year to January 25, 2014, on Companies House. Turnover was £183.7m, up from £85.5m in the 39 weeks to January 2013 – the period since JVG was formed through a merger of two separate businesses, Jacques Vert and Irisa Group, in 2012.

JVG’s like-for-like sales in the 52 weeks to January 2014 were 19.6% lower than in the same period the year before. During the year JVG sold the Ann Harvey brand due to poor trading.

JVG made an operating loss of £12.4m in the 52-week period, compared with £13.7m in the 39 weeks the year before. Gross margin was 52.7%, down from 55.3%.

EBITDA for the 52 weeks was negative at minus £7.1m, compared with £1.8m the year before. Earnings from exceptional items totalled £457,000, down from the £12.3m in 2013, due to an increase in the provision for legacy leases and restructuring items relating to the integration of Irisa.

Post-tax profits were £15.6m, against a £14.3m loss the year before.

The company said it would increase turnover through new commercial initiatives, including its exclusive designer collaborations and the ‘All dressed up’ marketing campaign for its spring 15 occasionwear range.

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