Fenwick report net sales down by 50%
Department store chain Fenwick has seen its losses widen after tackling “the most difficult trading conditions in living memory” during the pandemic.
The Newcastle headquartered family retailer which has nine stores around the UK saw gross sales for the year to January more than halve, from £323.7m to £140.5m. Turnover fell from £218.06m to £98.23m and operating losses before exceptional items widened from £11.8m to £44.99m. After exceptional items this figure grew to a loss of £111.7m.
The company reported that sales had tumbled after it was forced to close its stores during 21 weeks during the year.
In a report accompanying the accounts, directors said: “The lockdowns coincided with what would’ve been the peak selling and most profitable periods. Net sales fell by more than 50% to £119m. Given the pandemic it was necessary to reduce the level of stock by taking significant discounts. Together with significantly lower sales, this reduced the gross profit of the group by almost £60m.”
Fenwick has claimed £9m in furlough support from the Government and £8.7m in business rates relief to offset some of the impact from the pandemic, as well as cutting its costs by making 280 redundancies.
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