// Topps Tiles swings to a loss in “challenging” market
// The retailer booked a £4m statutory pre-tax loss during the 26 weeks to March 28
// This compared to a £5.2m profit the prior year
Topps Tiles swung to a half year loss after its revenue was hit by the Covid-19 crisis and also a tough trading environment before the pandemic even started.
In its trading update for the six months to March 28, the flooring retailer suffered a whopping £4m statutory pre-tax loss.
This compares to a £5.2 million half-year profit the prior year.
READ MORE: Topps Tiles issues profit warning
However, statutory measures pre-IFRS 16 saw half-year pre-tax loss come in at £400,000.
Sales fell 3.7 per cent to £106.2 million during the period and were down 6.1 per cent on a like-for-like basis, including week 26, when all of Topps Tiles’ stores were closed due to the lockdown.
With that particular week excluded from the numbers, like-for-like sales still fell 4.3 per cent, which the retailer blamed on a “challenging trading environment”.
Topps Tiles also scrapped its interim dividend and warned that it was unlikely to pay a final dividend as the coronavirus pandemic continues to impact sales.
Meanwhile, trials of new safe operating procedures commenced April 22, with 250 Topps Tiles stores currently offering a click-and-collect services amid the lockdown.
Topps Tiles said the gradual re-opening of stores was generating an improving trend, and it expected to have 250 stores fully opened by end of May, with a remaining 100 stores fully opened by the end of June.
The retailer highlighted that it had a robust liquidity position with option for further funding “through asset sales in event of extended disruption”.
Cash headroom as at March 28 stood at £21.7 million, and was currently at £14 million.