It was a year of style and substance for Moss Bros as the menswear specialist enjoyed the fruits of its investment.
Group like-for-like sales for the 52 weeks to 30 January saw an 8.2% increase, reaching £119m. While retail and hire sales both increased, ecommerce saw a leap of 36.3%, coming to represent 10% of total Moss Bros sales. Underlying profit before tax jumped 23.1%, finishing at £5.9m.
It was also a year of investment for the chain. Its store refit plan was accelerated, with 81 stores now trading in the new format. The senior management team was also strengthened with three new significant hires: a COO, Customer Director and People Director, all intended to improve the company’s service offering.
“We continue to make strong progress in the delivery of our strategic priorities,” said Moss Bros CEO Brian Brick
“The Group’s trading performance continues positively, in line with the Board’s expectations.”
The year saw the introduction of a new bespoke suit offering, ‘Tailor Me’, which will allow a large proportion of the Moss Bros suit range to be personalised.
“The retail environment remained highly competitive during the year, with heavy discounting,” Brick continued. “We remained focused on our core offer and the strengthening of our product range and traded our way through what was for us and most retailers a significant shift in consumer buying patterns, including a stronger emphasis online.
“The Moss Bros master brand is now well established and our attention has turned to the development of the supporting sub-brands of Moss London, Moss 1851, and Moss Esq. The brands are beginning to have resonance with individual customer segments, with stronger in-store and online brand positioning. We will track progress on this in the coming year.”
The first nine weeks of the new financial year saw a 5.2% growth in group like-for-like sales, with the company enjoying continuing growth across ecommerce, hire and in-store retail sales.