Retail news round-up on January 7, 2014: Lush posts Christmas sales surge as full year profits fall, Marks & Spencer house broker Citi cuts £10m from annual pre-tax profit forecast, Major supermarket chains to sign up for twice as much warehouse space in 2014
Lush posts Christmas sales surge as full year profits fall
Cosmetics retailer Lush recorded a 13.4% surge in Christmas sales to £20m during the five weeks up to December 29, according to the Telegraph. The 106-store retailer also reported a 12.2% like-for-like increase on the previous year. Internet sales jumped 27.7%. For the year ending June 30, Lush’s group turnover jumped by 11.3% to £363m. However, full-year pre-tax profits declined 16.2% to £21.9m.
Marks & Spencer house broker Citi cuts £10m from annual pre-tax profit forecast
Marks & Spencer’s house broker Citi has slashed £10m from the company’s annual pre-tax profit forecast, The Telegraph reported. Citi is forecasting that M&S will make pre-tax profits of £630m after concern that clothing sales have declined again and the retailer’s margins had been dragged down by discounting on the high street before Christmas. Citi has forecast that M&S’s like-for-like general merchandise sales, which includes clothing, tumbled by 0.5% in the firm’s third quarter to December 28. Citi also cut forecasts for M&S’s food business from a like-for-like rise of 3% to an increase of 2%.
Major supermarket chains to sign up for twice as much warehouse space in 2014
Major supermarkets, including Tesco, Asda and Waitrose, are to this year commit to doubling the space dedicated to internet distribution centres, or ‘dark stores’, according to data from property agent Jones Lang LaSalle. Around 1.8 million sq ft of warehouse space is already devoted to dark stores.