Thursday 15 November 2018

Pandora falls after claim management 'lost its grip'

Pandora is best known for a range of high-end charm bracelets, but has suffered from competition
Pandora is best known for a range of high-end charm bracelets, but has suffered from competition
Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

Danish jewellery chain Pandora's shares fell as much as 4.6pc in early trading yesterday, extending the latest decline into a second day.

It came after an analyst at Berenberg said Pandora's full-year outlook was "unachievable" in a note that accompanied a downgrade of the stock to 'hold' from 'buy'.

Pandora is listed on the Nasdaq Nordic Stock Exchange. First quarter results show that "management in Denmark has to some extent lost its grip on the business", analyst Zuzanna Pusz wrote in comments that caught the market's attention.

After more than a decade of growth that catapulted it into global brand status, Pandora has suffered a surprise slowdown in China - a key growth market.

That added to investor concerns around an earlier US sales decline.

Pandora is best known for a range of high-end charm bracelets, but has suffered in part as cut-price rivals produced charms that are physically compatible with the range.

Part of the response to emerging challenges to the business is to take greater control of its sales channels.

Last month, Pandora agreed a deal to take direct ownership of its Irish business from family-owned BJ FitzPatrick for €20m.

The deal includes 25 outlets in the Republic, and 15 shops and concessions in the North.

The price includes an additional €3m for stock. Pandora took over shop leases and responsibility for around 180 staff here on June 1. The chain has been here since 2007. Sales were €24m in the Republic and €5m in Northern Ireland last year.

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