Wilko profits drop 65% in “incredibly difficult year for retail”

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Wilko trading update Jerome Saint-Marc
Like-for-like sales declined by 6.1% during the period
// Wilko full-year pre-tax profits and sales decline in “challenging” year
// Pre-tax profits dropped by 65% while sales declined 5.6%

Wilko has seen its full-year pre-tax profits and sales drop thanks to the “challenging” UK retail environment.

In the year to February 1, the retailer’s pre-tax profits dropped by 65 per cent, exacerbated by a 5.6 per cent decline in sales to £1.5 billion.

Like-for-like sales declined by 6.1 per cent during the period, while sales of own-brand lines grew during the year and represented 55 per cent of overall sales.


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Meanwhile, Wilko’s EBITDA rose 7.5 per cent to £48.5 million during the year.

“There’s no denying it has been an incredibly difficult year for retail, but our continued focus on product development, controlling our margins, cash and costs and driving further operational efficiencies means we are making the right decisions to offset the challenges of the current retail market and realise our long-term vision,” Wilko chief executive Jerome Saint-Marc said.

The retailer did not draw on any banking facilities during the year and ended the financial period with net cash in the bank of £94.1 million.

“We quickly invested in safety and protection measures, we’re providing full pay for all our team members without seeking government assistance to do so, we’re working hard to protect as many jobs as we can and we’ve met all rent and supplier obligations in full to date.

“It’s reassuring to see the Wilko way of pulling together in action despite the many challenges our team members face at work and at home.

“We have experienced a mixed and dynamic trading performance during the pandemic but are confident that our robust planning means that we’re prepared for the future, whatever it may bring”.

Earlier this week, Wilko was accused of failing to keep staff and shoppers safe during the coronavirus crisis but has since hit back at union bosses to defend its position.

The GMB alleged that staff were “terrified” to work at the Wilko branch in Leek, North Staffordshire.

The trade union expressed concerns around the availability of hand sanitiser, issues over the use of card-only tills, and the management of queues at the Brook Street store.

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5 COMMENTS

  1. I have been in my local wilko just recently. The shelves are quite bare considering they have weekly deliveries.
    So please dont just blame it on the situation we are in atm.

  2. Shame this company misleads. The retail staff may be on site, but the h/o functions are being furloughed. Any profit declared is due to low to zero investment in store maintenance to the point of unsafe workplaces in some cases. Wage budget cuts with new policies to reduce customer service to practically zero. Company has become a insurance companies nightmare.

  3. It’s not got a pleasant shopping experience. Poor layouts and bland decor. It’s a poor alternative to Woolworths.

  4. Let me assure you the way in which WILKO treat there staff is disgusting.
    My local store here in Bradford i was in last week staff have been asking for masks & were not given them simply told do your job. What? This is Disgusting i had to vent my sheets anger at the buffoons who claim to be managers i did let fly this surely falls under health & safety surely i will never set foot in that place again makes me sick.
    There profit fall comes as no surprise to me.

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