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Clarks swings back into profit after year of ‘repositioning

Shoe retailer Clarks has reported a swing back to profit following a period of “recovery and repositioning”. The 197-year-old firm, which is headquartered in Street in… View Article

FASHION

Clarks swings back into profit after year of ‘repositioning

Shoe retailer Clarks has reported a swing back to profit following a period of “recovery and repositioning”.

The 197-year-old firm, which is headquartered in Street in Somerset, saw turnover grow to £920.3m during the financial year to the end of January 2022 – up 18% from £775m 12 months earlier. Profit after tax also jumped to £55.4m from a loss of £180.2m in 2020-2021.

Clarks, which appointed former New Balance boss Jon Ram as its new chief executive in March, said it was able to deliver a year of “recovery and repositioning” despite the lingering impact of the pandemic on the global supply chain.

Bosses attributed the return to profitability to a mixture of reduced discounting through its online and re-opened stores, and fewer overhead costs resulting from its ongoing “transformation programme.”

A spokesperson for Clarks said: “Although the global economic climate remains uncertain, we’re pleased to report a steady recovery and increase in consumer demand across all our markets, with profit after tax of £55.4m.

“In the current financial year, we’ve appointed a new CEO, Jon Ram, and we are focused on a business strategy designed to grow our business in current and new markets, and to build a foundation for sustainable growth in the years ahead.”

In May 2020, the brand announced it would cut 900 jobs as part of its ‘made to last’ strategy to revitalise the business through the pandemic. Hong Kong-based LionRock Capital completed a £100m deal for a majority stake in the business in February 2021, which Clarks said it had allowed it to turn the business around and had saved jobs and stores.

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