Superdry has swung to a half-year profit and hailed “clear signs of brand and financial recovery” despite suffering a fall in sales.
The fashion retailer posted a statutory profit of £4m during the 26 weeks to October 23, 2021, compared with an £18.9m loss during the same period last year.
Statutory earnings were also up on pre-Covid levels when Superdry suffered a £4.2m loss.
However, it remained in the red on an adjusted pre-tax basis, recording a loss of £2.8m. That narrowed from £10.6m year on year.
Group revenues slipped 1.9% year on year to £277.2m and were down 24.9% on a two-year basis.
Superdry attributed the bottom-line growth to improving full-price sales, which boosted margins by 3.5 percentage points.
As part of its half-year results statement, Superdry also updated on trading during the crucial Christmas trading period.
Group sales jumped 19.6% in the 11 weeks to January 8 but fell 11.7% on a two-year basis.
Superdry said it had maintained its strategy to drive full-price during the period and has not held an end-of-season Sale.
Gross margin improved 4.1 percentage points during the 11-week period as a result.
As a result, Superdry said it remained on track to deliver a full-year profit in line with market expectations.
Superdry boss Julian Dunkerton said: “I’m really pleased with our progress against each of our strategic initiatives with clear signs of brand and financial recovery.
“While there remains uncertainty about the impact of Covid-19 and the macro-economic environment, I am increasingly confident in the accelerating momentum of our reset and the strengthening of the brand.”
There were contrasting fortunes for Superdry’s fashion rival N Brown, which suffered a decline in sales year on year during the golden quarter.
The retailer said total revenues dropped 3.3% to £267.6m in the 18 weeks to January 1.
Sales of N Brown’s so-called “strategic brands” – JD Williams, Simply Be and Jacamo – rose 5.5% to £149m during the period. It did not report any comparisons with pre-pandemic levels.
N Brown said it now expects full-year adjusted EBITDA to come in between £93m and £96m – “at the lower end” of its previously guided range.
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