Moss Bros has once again defied the flagging fashion fortunes testing many others in the sector despite “the continuing tough trading environment.”

The specialist retailer posted increases in like-for-like and total sales in its first-quarter results today, buoyed by its burgeoning ecommerce arm and new ranges.

The retailer’s boss Brian Brick said the retailer was “acutely aware of the economic headwinds” coming in the year ahead as well as how “zero real wage growth will impact on consumer confidence.”

On the latter score, however, Moss Bros may be in a better position than most.

Menswear was the most robust fashion category when it came to defying shoppers’ growing propensity to splash their cash on experiences over clothing according to Mintel’s British Lifestyles report, which found that only one in five men said they had spent less on clothing over the past year, compared to 26% of women.

However, with a wider lens, the picture was less rosy as Mintel found that 83% of shoppers are concerned about rising prices as Brexit approaches.

Political storm clouds aside, Brick will be hoping Moss Bros can monopolise on the comparatively deep pockets of its customers as wedding, Ascot and prom season approaches.

Also today, flagging fashion and lifestyle retailer Joy was bought by management in a pre-pack administration deal and Brent Cross’ revamp moved a step closer after landlords submitted a planning application.

Quote of the day

“With the majority of the retail stores remaining open and with many jobs saved this is an excellent demonstration of why pre-packaged sales from administration will continue to have a place in rescuing businesses.”

Paul Ellison, partner at administrator KRE Corporate Recovery, on Joy’s pre-pack administration deal

Today in numbers


The proportion of shoppers worried about the rising cost of groceries, according to Mintel


The number of ebook and magazine titles now available at no charge for Amazon’s UK Prime subscribers

Monday’s agenda boss John Robert has guest edited the upcoming edition of Retail Week – look out for the first installment of his commissioned features on Monday.

Grace Bowden, reporter