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SuperGroup works to improve product flow

SuperGroup is working on a system to achieve better flow in product throughout the year, so it can cope with unpredictable weather patterns and reduce stock overhang.

Group chief executive Euan Sutherland told Drapers the business is reducing the proportion of “highly seasonally relevant” product in its ranges, such as heavy wool coats and shorts, in favour of more T-shirts, jogging bottoms, hoodies and denim, which sell all year.

It comes as the Superdry owner revealed yesterday (December 12) that trading in the first half of the year was disappointing, due to the unseasonably warm autumn weather.

“Juls [the company’s founder and product and brand director Julian Dunkerton] and I are working on a plan to flow our product better, which should reduce our stock levels, improve our margins and improve our response time,” explained Sutherland.

He said his ongoing review of the business would not lead to a “U-turn”, but would rather give some clarity on SuperGroup’s plans for the future, particularly in terms of its international expansion. He will report the results in spring 2015.

Looking forward to the next six months, Sutherland said: “The marketplace is still pretty aggressive; a lot of retailers have a lot of stock overhang so we will see that being traded through.”

SuperGroup ran some promotions in-store for Black Friday on November 28, which Sutherland said were “slightly more amplified” than usual, but “not out of the ordinary”.

He declined to comment on current trading, but hinted that Black Friday and the weekend that followed had been an “exciting day or two”. “Our IT and supply chain systems coped really well. We’re very well set up for Christmas.”

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