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Warm autumn drags down Bonmarché's Q4 results

Value women’s and menswear retailer Bonmarché has posted a 4% rise in like-for-like retail sales for the full year to March 28, despite like-for-likes dropping by 4.7% in the fourth quarter, which the retailer attributed to the hangover from an unseasonably mild autumn.

Including online, like for likes climbed 6% across the 52 week period, but dropped 3.3% during the fourth quarter.

The trading update shows significant change from 2014, when like-for-like sales in stores were up by 13.5% during the fourth quarter.

Bonmarché chief executive Beth Butterwick said the results reflect “a year of contrasts”. 

“A strong performance in the first half was supported by good summer weather, however the mild autumn created more difficult trading conditions in the second half of the year,” she added.

“Against this backdrop, we expect to report solid profit growth. During the second half of the year in particular, the loyalty of our core customers and our ability to maintain a tight control on costs have been key strengths.

“I am also pleased that through the targeted use of promotions and discounts, the terminal stock holding at the end of the year was almost as low as it was last year, despite the increase in stores.”

During the year Bonmarché increase its number of stores and concessions by 29, from 263 to 292, but did not break down the growth.

Bonmarché will present its preliminary results on June 12.



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