SuperGroup has reported a “disappointing” end to the year as sales growth slowed with retail like-for-likes flat.
The group, which owns young fashion brand Superdry and chain Cult, saw total sales rise 14.1% to £75.2m. SuperGroup has been plagued by a catalogue of problems in recent months including warehouse issues and most recently an arithmetic error which led the company to issue a profit warning last month.
Retail sales in the 13 weeks to April 29 rose by 24.7% to £39.4m, but on a like-for-like basis sales were flat. The company said the challenging retail environment had seen a slow-down in sales from standalone stores and concessions although the online performance continued to be strong.
Sales in SuperGroup’s wholesale division rose 4.4% to £35.8m, yet the underlying growth rate was around 9%. The company admitted that the continued expansion of the UK retail business has affected wholesale sales in the UK, however said it continues to generate “good growth” through its international expansion.
SuperGroup said over the last financial year it had opened four outlet stores, which it said provides the opportunity to manage stock levels in a profitable manner. In its trading statement the company said although “off-price” channels such as outlets and eBay are a relatively small percentage of sales they have had an adverse impact on the group’s gross margin.
Chief executive officer Julian Dunkerton said: “Although the fourth quarter has been a disappointing end to a challenging year, the brand remains strong and this, together with the Group’s investments in key senior personnel and system infrastructure, provides a solid platform for the coming financial year.”