Fashion group Alexon’s like-for-likes have remained flat and it is exploring new financing options to invest in turnaround.
The retailer is assessing funding options after its ability to invest in its recovery plan, which includes a property restructure and systems overhaul, was hindered. Alexon hopes to reduce its debt and make money available for business improvements.
The fashion group’s like-for-likes edged up 0.9% in the 22 weeks to July 2 but margins slipped as it resorted to increased promotions.
Alexon said despite a “creditable performance” it expects current year performance to be hit by the challenging trading conditions.The retailer said it had a difficult start to high summer with lower footfall in June.
Brands Kaliko, Alexon and Eastex outperformed during the period and helped offset losses on casual brand Dash and petite clothing brand Minuet. Dash contined to be impacted by cotton price inflation which the chain said was now easing slightly.
Ann Harvey remained broadly flat but its new casual development had shown “very encouraging signs”.
The retailer said its concession performance was polarised.
Alexon’s online sales continued to soar and were up 115% over the period. Catalogue sales of the Eastex and Dash brands, though still small, have exceeded the retailer’s expectations and the retailer will exmapnd this channel for its more classic brands.
The retailer said its refurbishment programme was bearing fruit and had delivered good sales and a margin uplift. However, refurbishment would be limited by the need to conserve cash. It also continues to reshape its property portfolio, and proposes the sale of its two former warehouses in Milton Keynes and Cardiff.