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Hobbs swings to full-year loss as pandemic bites

By Huw Hughes


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Image: Hobbs, Facebook

Luxury womenswear brand Hobbs swung to a full-year loss and saw its turnover halve in the 12 months to March 27 as the pandemic took its toll on the business.

The British brand’s turnover in the year dropped 51 percent to 65.1 million pounds, with the company citing store closures and a drop in demand for its core product categories such as dresses, occasionwear and officewear.

The company said it lost 47 percent of its store trading hours during the year.

It added that it was “performing well” prior to the pandemic.

Hobbs swings to loss

The London-based brand made a loss after tax of 15.2 million pounds compared to a profit of 4.3 million pounds a year earlier.

The company said its gross margin also dropped to 46 percent from 60 percent a year earlier, driven by increased promotional activity and higher Covid-19-related stock provisioning at the end of the year.

Looking ahead, Hobbs said its principal risk is “the pace at which customer shopping habits return as the world recovers from the pandemic”.

But it added that its “attractive and affordable” offering combined with its “strong online presence”, both directly and through third parties, make it “well placed to thrive”.