LK Bennett sales and profits fall in tough retail environment

LK Bennett had it tough in its 2017 financial year with the footwear-to-fashion specialist reporting an operating loss or £5.9 million in the 12 months to last July.


LK Bennett


The high-end brand also saw sales falling to £77.4 million from £78.8 million, although it managed to increase its like-for-like sales by a reasonably healthy 3.7%.

Online sales were the key to boosting that figure with retail store like-for-like turnover dipping slightly while sales via the web were much stronger.

As mentioned, the operating loss reached nearly £6 million, ballooning after the firm made a tiny profit of £100,000 in the previous year. 

Chairman Patrick Woodall described the results as unsatisfactory, which goes without saying, but he also said the company has “taken decisive action to improve performance.”

He aded that having dealt with a number of important historical issues, the company now has the right foundation for future success, despite the “demanding” retail sector at present.

The company has gone through major change since the period these results covered ended and in September last year, its founder Linda Bennett bought back the 45% of the firm that she didn't already own, buying it from Phoenix Equity Partners.

The retailer trades from over 260 stores in 31 countries and its online sales add up to almost a third of its total. It has been expanding both at home and abroad, opening stores in China, Russia, Qatar, the US and the UK.
 

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