Acquisition costs blamed
Mosaic fashions made a loss of£3.3 million in the first quarter, as a result of increased financing costs.

However, sales jumped 95 per cent to£192 million, following the acquisition of Rubicon Retail in the third quarter of last year. EBITDA also rose 47 per cent to£14.8 million before acquisition and integration costs, which represents 8 per cent of sales.

Mosaic's Karen Millen, Oasis, Warehouse and Whistles fascias delivered sales growth, but Shoe Studio was flat, while Coast and Principles posted declines.

The retailer said that May was a particularly difficult month, but performance has improved in June, with sales being driven by the demand for occasionwear. It expects the rest of the year on the UK high street to remain challenging, but with continued growth in its international and e-commerce businesses, the group still maintains a forecast of low double-digit growth in EBITDA for the year.

The retailer said that international sales, which now represent 18 per cent of turnover, soared 27 per cent across all brands. E-commerce sales totalled£3.6 million, almost three times as much as in the first quarter of last last.

The group said that 27 new stores and concessions were opened across the UK and Europe during the three months to April 28, taking its total to 1,656. In addition, 15 international franchise stores were also opened, taking the portfolio to 183.

Mosaic Fashions chief executive Derek Lovelock said: 'The first quarter has been disappointing for us, with fashion retailing in the UK generally difficult, combined with continuing underperformance in Coast and Principles. The second quarter started slowly, but there has been some evidence of improvement in recent weeks.

However, he added: 'Coast has shown encouraging signs of recovery, but, conversely, sales at Oasis have slowed.'