On 29th May Jessops plc announced their interim results for the six months ending 30th March which showed like for like sales down 5.0%. Jessops also reported on trading in the eight weeks ended 25th May when like for like sales were down 8.0%, giving a cumulative 34 week performance that was down 5.6%.
Against the background of a worsening retail environment, trading since 29th May has not improved going into the key summer period as anticipated based on prior years’ experience. Therefore, like for like sales in the 41 weeks ended 13th July are now down 5.7%, with the last three weeks trending at an average of 11% down.
Whilst lower than originally anticipated the Board still expects full year EBITDA to be ahead of last year’s equivalent of £4.4m, as Jessops remains cash generative and is operating within its existing banking facilities.
The Board believes that the loss before tax, non-recurring items and financing fees will now be significantly worse than the small loss announced on 29th May and due to the worsening retail environment, together with the increased costs of interest and depreciation, that it will be worse than the equivalent loss of £7.5m last year.
David Adams, Executive Chairman said “The actions we have taken throughout the course of this year have resulted in a gross margin increase of over 200 basis points, significantly decreased overheads and stock levels. The retail environment has worsened significantly over the last few weeks but the strategy the Board is implementing means that we still expect to deliver an EBITDA that is higher than last year.”
For more information please visit the Jessops website.