Saturday 23 September 2017

Dorothy Perkins firm cuts its costs in wake of losses

Fashion has helped to bring up retail sales
Fashion has helped to bring up retail sales
John Mulligan

John Mulligan

The firm behind the Irish operation of Arcadia Group's Dorothy Perkins, Burton and Evans stores racked up a €1.5m loss in its last financial year as it struggled in a tough consumer environment.

Turnover at Arcadia Group Multiples (Ireland) fell to £19.7m (€24.1m) from £46.6m (€57.1m) in the 12 months to the end of August 2013, but the decline was the result of the firm having sold its Top Shop and Top Man brands to another group company for £8m (€9.8m) at the end of the previous financial year.

Billionaire retailing tycoon Philip Green, who owns Arcadia, sold a 25pc stake in his Topshop chain in 2012 for £350m in cash and used the proceeds to pay off debt attached to Arcadia.

The deal valued Topshop at £2bn (€2.5bn) including its debts. The stake was sold to US private-equity firm Leonard Green.

Management at Arcadia Group Multiples (Ireland) said that on a like-for-like basis, turnover relating to continuing operations here fell 13pc during the last financial year, "as all brands found trading conditions in Ireland extremely difficult".

"To counteract the decline in performance, the company has sought to reduce costs wherever possible," the directors added.

During the last financial year, the firm also incurred an exception charge of £2.4m (€3m) related to the movement on a provision against the future leasing obligations of the company's loss-making stores.

No dividend was paid last year, compared to the £77.8m (€95.5m) that was handed over by the Irish unit to the UK parent the previous financial year.

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