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Profits fall at Mothercare but UK business strengthens

Full-year profits fell at Mothercare in the 52 weeks to March 25 2017, but the retailer’s UK business returned to profit during the second half of the year.

Mothercare

Mothercare

Mark Newton-Jones

Mark Newton-Jones

Mark Newton-Jones, chief executive, Mothercare

Pre-tax profits after exceptional and non-underlying items fell from £9.7m to £7.1m.

Underlying pre-tax profits ticked up slightly from £19.6m to £19.7m, despite what was described as a “difficult” summer.

Chief executive Mark Newton-Jones said he was pleased with the progress of turnaround plans and said a “simpler approach” would lead to a more agile business: “Following a difficult start to the year, the UK recovered in the second half, returning to underlying profit for the first time in six years. International markets showed signs of recovery, with strong growth in Russia and Indonesia, and a sales recovery in China, albeit the country is yet to return to positive cash profit.

“The Middle East continues to be economically challenging. We have launched ten new websites globally, bringing our total to 21 countries now trading online.

“Digital revenue is on a trajectory to be over half of our turnover. We are clear in the role our stores will play for the future, by offering specialist advice and service and first class product presentation. Store numbers will reduce over time as we focus on a regional presence in key conurbations across the UK.”

 

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