Fashion retailer Supergroup, owner of the Superdry & Cult brands, has today reported a slowdown in trading during January 2012 following a strong Christmas period.
Retail sales for the 13 weeks ending January 29th grew 27.8 per cent to £78.5 million for the company and like-for-like trading increased 4.4 per cent compared to the same period last year.
Much of this growth came during the Christmas period however with LFLs up 9.3 per cent in December alone, while sales in the last three weeks in January actually declined from their 2011 level.
Due to the slump in trading since the start of the year, the retailer’s management now expects full-year profit before tax to be towards the lower end of market expectations which currently range between £50 million and £54.1 million.
Julian Dunkerton, CEO of Supergroup, commented: “Retail sales during the quarter have been mixed, with a challenging last three weeks of January.
“Whilst we continue to expand our retail, wholesale and internet businesses, our focus in the coming year will be on rolling out our new ranges in the UK and internationally and making improvements to the operational side of our business.”
Property expansion has continued for Supergroup during the quarter with four new stores opening across the UK, including a new floor at its Regent Street flagship in London, and the group now operates 76 standalone outlets and 74 concessions in the country.
Wholesale trading returned to growth in January with sales up 59.2 per cent after experiencing a fall of 3.8 per cent during November & December, and the firm’s Spring/Summer 2012 range is being delivered to wholesale customers earlier this year than last.
Group sales increased 25.3 per cent in the quarter and now total £238.6 million for the year to date, an improvement of 38.7 per cent compared to the same time last year.