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Matalan reports Q3 sales fall but ‘resilient’ margin performance

Matalan has reported that sales fell by 7.7% to £298m for the 13 weeks to November 29, against £321m during the same period in 2013.

The value retailer said EBITDA fell to £39.6m, compared to £41.5m in 2013, but that it had a closing cash position of £93.7m, against £59.2m during the previous year.

For the five weeks to January 3, sales fell by 1.7%. However the Boxing Day sale launched with 3.4% lower stock volumes than last year, which managing director Jason Hargreaves said was down to “a tightly bought seasonal range” that “insulated us well from significant margin dilution”.

Hargreaves said: “The business has delivered a resilient margin performance in what was a very challenging sales environment.

“In what has been a year of supply chain transition, our change programme has progressed well and nears completion. Alongside this, we have successfully opened our first true city centre store format in Cardiff.

“The business has landed these initiatives whilst delivering what we expect to be EBITDA growth for the full year of around 5%.”

Matalan confirmed that its 15,000 sq ft store at 149/151 Oxford Street in London will open in spring this year.

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