Primark achieves strong full year performance in UK
Primark owner Associated British Foods has reported that the fashion retailer’s full year revenue was 5% ahead of the previous year at constant currency, although like-for-like sales were down 2.1%.
Sales reached £7.4 billion while adjusted operating profit rose by 13% to £843 million in the year to 15 September.
ABF said Primark’s UK performance in the period was particularly strong with total sales up 5.3% and like-for-likes rising by 1.2%.The company said the retailer benefited from good sales of its summer ranges which meant that markdowns were lower than expected.
Sales in the Eurozone were 4.7% ahead of last year at constant currency while like-for-like sales fell by the same percentage. ABF said the decline in like-for-likes was driven by unseasonable weather in northern Europe and by soft trading in a weak German market. However, sales growth was especially strong in France, Belgium and Italy.
ABF said it was it was pleased with Primark’s performance in the US where it opened its ninth store in July.
During the year, Primark increased its retail selling space by a net 0.9 million square feet with 15 net new stores. This has brought the total estate to 360 stores.
Michael McLintock, ABF chairman, said: “Primark has the potential for growth in all of its existing markets, and the opening of Birmingham Pavilions next year, at 160,000 square feet, will make it our largest store. In the medium term our plans to add further stores in the US, and to enter a number of markets in central and eastern Europe, should support our current rate of selling space expansion.”
Across the wider ABF group, which includes sugar, ingredients, agriculture and grocery businesses, group revenue rose by 1% to £15.6 billion while statutory operating profit edged up 1% to £1.34 billion.
George Weston, ABF chief executive, added: “This was another year of progress for the group. Looking ahead, management have clear plans for further investment and for pursuing opportunities for business improvement.”
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