The unveiling of Clinton Cards’ strategic review, expected today, has been delayed.
Darcy Willson-Rymer, who joined from Starbucks in October, has been leading a strategic review of the business as it fights a slump in profits.
A spokesman for the greetings card retailer confirmed that the details of the review will not be published today. It is understood it will be unveiled in “the coming weeks”.
Analyst Nick Bubb highlighted the deferral in publishing the review. He said: “As the main aim is to keep Clinton’s banks happy, we suspect that things have been complicated by the tough trading Clintons has suffered so far this year.”
But a source close to the retailer said the review is making “good progress” and “contains radical detail on how to make Clintons good again”.
The Clinton Cards’ spokesman said: “As stated in the interims, a period of consultation with key stakeholders will now follow.”
In the 26 weeks to January 29 Clinton Cards made a pretax loss of £3.7m compared to the previous year’s £11.7m profit as a result of “significantly weaker margins” due to stock clearance sales in January.
Last month, restructuring specialists Ernst & Young were hired to seek a sale of Birthdays, which is now understood to be off the table after Clinton Cards was unable to find a buyer. Rothschild was also hired to advise on the strategy review.
Retail Week revealed this month that KPMG was set to be appointed to advise on restructuring the business. Sources told Retail Week options being considered include a controversial company voluntary arrangement (CVA), which would allow it to shed stores.