Outdoors specialist Blacks Leisure has suffered a steep decline in first-half profits but said it is making progress with restructuring, details of which are being finalised.
The retailer said its banker, Lloyds, which agreed to a standstill agreement in September subject to the retailer coming up with satisfactory proposals by October 30, was satisfied with the turnaround plans outlined so far.
Blacks reported a loss before tax of £18.1m for the 26 weeks to August 29, compared to a loss of £6.7m in the comparable period last year. Exceptional charges s of £6.1m, including restructuring costs, had an impact. Sales fell to £124.9m from £133m.
Like-for-likes slipped 1.1%, but – excluding closing stores – advanced 3.8% in the first two months of the new financial year.
Last month Blacks put its Sandcity boardwear business into administration and is shutting 89 loss-making shops.
Chief executive Neil Gillis said more action will be needed. He said: “In the current economic climate it is clear that more radical measures are needed to free the core outdoor business from the burden of the loss-making boardwear business and a tail of stores that have not traded profitably for many years.
“We will work with our advisors, KPMG, to implement the restructuring plan which will enable us to eliminate these losses. We expect to be in a position to announce further details of the restructuring shortly.”
Blacks is thought to be considering measures such as a CVA as part of its restructuring.