Supergroup retail like-for-likes fell 3.1% in its fourth quarter as it revealed it is likely to post full-year profit at the lower end of expectations.
The fashion retailer said it experienced a “more challenging retail trading environment” in the period from January 27 to April 26.
Supergroup retail sales jumped 13.3% to £54.6m but like-for-like sales fell 3.1% as a result of the late Easter and the product mix. Supergroup added that sales were suppressed as it continued to reduce its level of clearance activity on eBay to protect margins. Supergroup said that after taking this into account, like-for-likes actually fell 1.3%. It also delivered gross margin improvements.
Total sales grew 12.4% in its fourth quarter to £97.8m as wholesale performed in line with the order book. Wholesale sales grew 11.2% to £43.2m.
Supergroup said it expects full-year pre-tax profit to be towards the lower end of consensus at £61.1m.
For the full-year retail sales surged 17.7% to £285.4m and like-for-like sales are up 3.2%. Total sales for the year grew 19.6% to £431m.
Supergroup opened 100,000 sq ft of new space in the quarter. The retailer also said the group fnished relocating its retail warehouse. Additionally, all retail and online orders are being dispatched from a new distribution centre. It is now entering its second phase of planned investment that will focus on payroll, human resources, finance and point of sale systems.
Supergroup chief executive Julian Dunkerton said: ”We have delivered a solid performance over the past year whilst managing a smooth transition to our new distribution centre and the implementation of the merchandising management system.
“The reaction to our autumn/winter 2014/15 collections is encouraging and, with a strong pipeline of new stores, particularly in mainland Europe, positions us well for the year ahead. The strength of the Superdry brand and the investment we have made in our teams leaves me confident in our ability to deliver the growth strategy.”