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Exclusive: Losses widen at Karen Millen

Karen Millen has reported an operating loss of £10.5m for the year to 27 February following investment in digital infrastructure and weaker trading in key markets, including Russia, Drapers can reveal.

Karen millen

Karen millen

Operating losses the year before amounted to £9.7m.

Gross profit for the business fell 8% year on year to £93.9m, while sales dropped 10% to £161m. UK sales remained broadly flat despite a “challenging” retail environment.

The retailer said it made “significant investment” in digital in the period to improve the online and mobile experience and drive Karen Millen towards being a “true omnichannel business”. A new online platform launched in May.

During the year Beth Butterwick was appointed as chief executive and joined the business in August, replacing Mike Shearwood, who left in September 2015.

Butterwick said: “The results for the year to February are in line with expectations given the retail environment and much-needed, significant investment in the business.

“We are encouraged by the early impact of our investment in digital and are focused on putting the right building blocks and strategy in place to grow Karen Millen and develop a truly omnichannel business. I am looking forward to leading our new, strong management team as we develop and grow the business.”

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